Exhibitions FAQs

What can I expect from my visit to House of Illustration's exhibitions?

We have three gallery spaces where we show changing exhibitions. Our Main and South Galleries host exhibitions about different aspects of illustration. Our Quentin Blake Gallery shows a changing selection of works from Quentin Blake's archive, and work by other artists and illustrators selected by Quentin.

Visit our What's on page to find out what's on and what's coming up. Our Visit us page will tell you about our opening hours, access and how to find us.
Occasionally, one of our spaces will be closed for a short time while we change the exhibitions. Please check our What's on page to see which exhibitions are open when you plan to visit.

How do you choose your exhibitions?

Our exhibitions programme is curated by our in-house team who collaborate with illustrators, experts and owners of collections. We aim to represent as broad a range of work as possible, and so each year we plan a programme of exhibitions that cover illustration in different media and from different time periods, fields and countries.

We particularly want to show work that hasn't been seen or explored before and to reveal new and unexpected things about the practice of illustration.

Our gallery spaces are available for hire for private events, but we do not hire our spaces to other organisations for public exhibitions.

How can I submit an idea for an exhibition?

Our exhibitions staff develop and deliver our exhibitions programme. If you have an exhibition theme you would like to propose for their consideration, you may send your idea to exhibitions@houseofillustration.org.uk. Please send a summary of your idea as a word document of no more than two pages with up to ten supporting images. We will respond to you within 4 weeks. Please note that we plan our exhibitions programme two years in advance and that we receive many more suggestions than we are able to accommodate. Please note that we are not able to give detailed feedback on proposals that we are unable to take forward.

Do your exhibitions travel to other galleries?

Yes. We make our exhibitions available to tour to museums and galleries in the UK and overseas. Click here to see our available exhibitions.

Can you identify or value an artwork I have?

Our staff are not able to identify artworks or give valuations. If you are interested in selling your artwork, commercial galleries dealing in illustration such as Chris Beetles Gallery and The Illustration Cupboard or auction houses like Sotheby's may be able to help you. Alternatively, the Victoria & Albert Museum now offers a monthly artwork opinions service (valuations are not provided) with their specialist staff. 

Can you put me in touch with Quentin Blake?

Quentin Blake is our founding trustee and our permanent Quentin Blake Gallery hosts changing exhibitions of his work. 

If you would like to contact Quentin about a project, ask him a question or licence his images please visit his website for more details.

I'm an illustrator; can someone at HoI look at my portfolio?

We love seeing illustrators' work, but as we have a small team we are not able to meet illustrators to view their portfolios.

You may be interested in submitting your work for consideration for our Illustrator in Residence programme. In spring/summer each year, we invite applications from illustrators who would like to undertake a six-month research project. Visit our Residency page for more information.

In autumn/winter we invite submissions of work to our annual Book Illustration Competition, run in partnership with The Folio Society.

You can also sign up for one of our regular masterclasses or courses where our team of professional illustrators will help you develop an aspect of your work. Visit our What’s on page to find out more.

The best way to stay up-to-date with what we have coming up is to sign up to our e-newsletter and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Can you tell me how to get illustration commissions?

We aren't able to offer career advice to individuals, however we have a regular programme of talks by professional illustrators who give insights into their practice, and we offer specialist courses and masterclasses for illustrators looking to develop particular skills. Please see our What's on page for more details and sign up to our e-newsletter.

Can I interview a member of your exhibitions team for my research project or dissertation?

We are always pleased to hear about students writing about illustration. However, as we are a small team and our time is taken up with delivering our programmes, we are not often able to give interviews.

Some recent articles about the work of our exhibitions team can be found on It's Nice That and francescorner.com. Links to articles and reviews of our exhibitions can be found on our listings pages. We also write about our exhibitions on our blog.

Can I do an internship or work experience in HoI's exhibitions department?

The exhibitions department does not currently have any available internships or work experience placements. Future opportunities will be advertised on or Vacancies page.

Our visitor services and events departments have active volunteering programmes that you can find more out about here.

If we haven't answered your exhibition-related query above, please write to us at exhibitions@houseofillustration.org.uk.