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London is full of animals. They are hidden in crumbling graveyards, daubed in canal-bank graffiti, perched atop rooftops. But in the hustle-and-bustle at street-level they are all too often overlooked. This quirky guidebook, Animal London, with its gorgeous photography, brings to life the animal artworks that give London its unique character. From rabbits, owls, dogs and cats to tortoises, dolphins, sharks and gorillas, a menagerie of creatures inhabits every corner of the capital from Tobacco Docks to Crystal Palace, Bankside to Hackney.
They span both ancient and modern too: monstrous medieval gargoyles lurk down damp alleyways, while in a modern urban wasteland there lives a 'mechanosaurous' made out of car parts by scrap merchants. These animals fill London with life. From the moment you spy one in the undergrowth of a neglected park, or spot for the first time one clinging to the parapet of a classic landmark, you will embark on a remarkable topographical treasure-hunt.
Ianthe Ruthven is a photographer specialising in architecture, interiors and landscape. Her work has appeared in numerous books and magazines including Architectural Digest, Art and Antiques, Country Homes & Interiors and World of Interiors. Her previous books include The Irish Home and The Scottish House. She has had three exhibitions in at the National Theatre in London, including A London Bestiary (2010) where many of the images in this book originally appeared.