graphic artists in the arab countries

Naji al-Ali: A Tribute

The life, work and legacy of the great Palestinian cartoonist

The date of this event has changed. It will now take place on Friday 27 October at 7pm. Please click here to book for the new date.

Tickets purchased for the original date will be valid, and all ticket holders will be contacted with further information.

Naji al-Ali (1938–87) was a Palestinian political cartoonist. He drew over 40,000 cartoons, from sharply critical commentaries on Palestinian and Arab politics and political leaders to visionary symbols of inhumanity and the pity of war, which transcended the divides. Born in Galilee, al-Ali was a victim of the nakba (“disaster”) in 1948 when his region was cleared to make way for Jewish settlers. He grew up in Lebanese refugee camps and prisons, scribbling protest cartoons on the walls, and eventually found work in newspapers. From 1969 onwards, his images featured the figure of Handala, the barefoot child whosilently watches all the evils perpetrated in the Middle East, and who has since become an icon of Palestinian defiance. Naji al-Ali was shot by unknown assailants outside the offices of ‘al-Qabas’, a Kuwaiti newspaper, in London on and died five weeks later in August 1997. This event explores the remarkable power and influence of his work, and a legacy which continues to the present.

Participants include The Guardian cartoonist Steve Bell and Karma Nabulsi (University of Oxford), with live music by Palestinian singer Reem Kelani. Other participants to be announced soon. Hosted by Omar Al-Qattan, Chairman of the A M Qattan Foundation.

Part of the programme that accompanies the display Comics and Cartoon Art from the Arab world in the British Library Treasures Gallery.

The Knowledge Centre Bar will be open from 18.00 until 22.00.


Name: Naji al-Ali: A Tribute
Where: Knowledge Centre
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Show Map How to get to the Library
When: Tue 29 Aug 2017, 19:00 - 20:30
Price: Full Price: £10.00
Member: £7.00
Senior 60+: £8.00
Student: £7.00
Registered Unemployed: £7.00
Under 18: £7.00
Friend of the BL: £7.00
Enquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546