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Philip Pullman CBE, ©Wolf Marloh

Philip Pullman Writes on Heath Robinson

Philip Pullman has written the Foreword to Adam Hart-Davis’s new book Very Heath Robinson, celebrating the work of one of Great Britain’s best-loved artists. Philip Pullman is the author of His Dark Materials, a trilogy of novels which has sold more than 17.5 million copies worldwide, and has long been an admirer of Heath Robinson’s imaginary world in all its charming absurdity. The first volume in Pullman’s new trilogy The Book of Dust will be published in October.

Heath Robinson’s world is immediately recognizable and immensely lovable, says Philip Pullman, with its absurd contrivances for doing such things as testing mistletoe for its kiss-permitting properties or trying the nerve of a promising young student at the Royal College of Steeplejacks. Pullman conveys the gorgeous amateurishness of the objects themselves, the social observation in the drawings and the charm of the Heath Robinson repertory company, ‘the earnest top-hatted men who oversee the machines and are convinced they are being rational and clever and up-to-date’. You can find more information about Philip Pullman and Very Heath Robinson here.

Heath Robinson, History and Art, Philip Pullman, Very Heath Robinson