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Goff Gleadle Shares His New Book, The Big Head Man: The Life and Art of Lawrence Gleadle
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Goff Gleadle shares his new book, The Big Head Man: The Life and Art of Lawrence Gleadle

Members of Southsea Green have a mutual admiration for the written word and beautiful art. One of our members, Goff Gleadle, recently dedicated much of his time to publishing the academic book, The Big Head Man: The Life and Art of Lawrence Gleadle, which has been extensively researched and written with sincere investment in the topic of lithographic art. Goff explores his personal experience with some of the major printers of the day, such as Stafford & Co. Through the discovery of these rare prints in a dormant shed, Goff shares comprehensive details about the creative process that would otherwise be unknown. The Big Head Man focuses on articulating insightful stories from an artist’s life and the preservation of art history, one page at a time. This book provides a rare and detailed look into the skilful, creative process of lithographic art; to help ensure that books look and feel as beautiful as the stories they tell.

Southsea Green hosts book talks and discussions. We are proud to announce this book release and we will share updates on the Southsea Green website. Explore the craft of writing and making a book. Explore the world of literature while exploring the natural world.

Book Description

Lawrence Gleadle (1907-1996) was a lithographic artist for Stafford & Co, a printer in Nottingham in the 1920's and 30's, interpreting designs supplied by advertising agencies for the highly-skilled process of stone lithography. From the first decade of the Twentieth Century until the 1980s, Stafford's were the largest printers of film posters, responsible, in their heyday, for up to half of the ones printed in England. 

When Gleadle became fully qualified as a lithographic artist, he was affectionately known as a 'Big Head Man', because he painted the portraits of film stars and advertising characters for large posters (sometimes huge '48-sheet' billboards), while others would add background and typography for posters.

Happily, Lawrence kept samples of his work, mostly fragments of the large posters and colour separations, from approximately 1937-1941. His son, Goff (b, 1942), knew nothing of the existence of the posters and little of the history behind them. It was not until he was in his late thirties that his father showed him the posters. Now, four decades later, Goff has put them in the safe-keeping of DMU's Cinema and Television History Institute (CATHI).