Arthur Rackham illustrations on show in Henley-on-Thames

Original books with drawings from an "iconic" illustrator have gone on display to the public.

Arthur Rackham's work is featured in an exhibition at the River and Rowing Museum, in Henley on Thames, until 31 May.

The exhibition, entitled Through the Looking Glass: Illustrations by Arthur Rackham, has 15 original books on display, including A Christmas Carol, Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, A Midsummer-Night's Dream and Hansel and Gretel.

Image copyright Bridgeman Image Library
Image caption "The Serpentine is a lovely lake, and there is a drowned forest at the bottom of it", from Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens (1906)
Image copyright Bridgeman Image Library
Image caption "She arranged the shawl with a professional fold, and tied the strings of the rusty bonnet under his chin", from Wind in the Willows (1939)

Original prints, with work from Alice in Wonderland and Wind in the Willows, can also be seen.

His work dates from the Edwardian "golden age" of British book illustration, which started in about 1900, until the start of the First World War.

There was a strong market for high-quality illustrated volumes and many of Rackham's books were produced in a deluxe limited edition, often vellum-bound and sometimes signed.

Image copyright Bridgeman Image Library
Image caption "At this the whole pack rose into the air and came flying down upon her'", from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1907)

Eloise Chapman, curator at the River and Rowing Museum, said: "We are thrilled to have such iconic work at the museum - Rackham's work resonates with adults and children alike.

"Although his illustrations are almost a century old, they are still a definitive source of imagination and fantasy."

Image copyright Bridgeman Image Library
Image caption "It was a golden afternoon", from The Wind in the Willows (1939)

The collection has been loaned by Rackham collector Ann Haley.

The illustrator was born in Lewisham in 1867, as one of 12 children and died in 1939.

In 1892, he started working for the Westminster Budget as a reporter and illustrator.

His first book illustrations were published in 1893 and he became a full time illustrator shortly after this.

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