Louis Hellman


Louis Hellman has for the past four decades drawn cartoons commenting on the world of architecture and planning for The Architects’ Journal and Building Design as well as caricaturing famous architects in the style of their buildings for the Architectural Review, subsequently collected in a book, Archi-tetes. The Id in the Grid(Academy 2000). Other books include All Hellman Breaks Loose (1980), Architecture for Beginners (1986), Do It With An Architect (1999) and Architecture A to Z. A Rough Guide (2001).

Hellman studied at the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London and the Ecole des Beaux Arts, Paris. He worked as an architect for YRM, the GLC and the Spastics Society (now SCOPE) before branching out on his own.

He has had exhibitions at the Architectural Association (1979), Interbuild (1991 and 1993), Cambridge (1996), Sir John Soane’s Museum (2000), Barcelona (2001) and Shrewsbury (2006). He has exhibited at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition every year since 1998.

He has contributed cartoons to numerous publications includingDesign Week, Private Eye, Punch, The Observer, The Guardian, The Independent, New Society, The Statesman and The Evening Standard. He has lectured extensively in the UK, Australia and the United States.

He received an MBE in 1993 for services to architecture and an Honorary Degree from Oxford Brookes University in 2002.


The Hellman cartoons are the first thing I turn to… and I am hardly ever disappointed. They are by far the best architectural lampooning known to me.
Sir Nikolaus Pevsner

Inside every satirist is a bruised idealist, outraged at the ease with which we abandon principles and cover our tracks with rhetoric which we even begin to believe ourselves. Hellman is the Orwell of the profession, our indispensible guide to the architectural Animal Farm.
Colin Ward

[Hellman]… manages to combine beautifully the changing architectural styles and the historic events that surround them… So simple but so telling. I applaud his humour and his appreciation of the little man’s part in the scheme of things. But this is no laughing matter, and I believe that nobody realises it more than him.
Ralph Steadman

[Hellman’s] comments are often merciless… and always blissfully funny. As… a sharp observer on our industry he is unrivalled. Long may he reign.
Sir High Casson

Hellman is not only up-to-date with all the jargon but well grounded in history, and I feel he would take no more for granted in the seventeenth century that the twentieth.
Asa Briggs

Hellman’s eye is unerring. Brilliant use of photomontage adds to his power… his ability to expose the pretensions of architects, makes him devastating. He is a great cartoonist in the English Tradition.
Gavin Stamp

For years Hellman has done caricatures of leading architects based on their buildings… Whether it is a deconstructed Zaha Hadid or an organically Art Nouveau Antonio Gaudi, the image and the text have an underlying educative purpose. The laugh is real, but it is never cheap
Hugh Pearman


All sizes quoted are image sizes