New innovative artwork featuring Charles Darwin as never seen before is set to go on show in Shrewsbury. Jonathan Soden and Gary Drew with the new paintings A pair of large and colourful paintings by a leading mural artist have been commissioned by The Soden Gallery in the town and soon to be unveiled. Jonathan Soden, owner of the gallery on Wyle Cop, said that he was very excited by the new pieces, which would be exhibited from June 1 at the start of the Comic Salopia festival, an event celebrating the medium of comic artwork. “I asked international mural artist Gary Drew to create some new images inspired by his travels, the art world, and the local area. “Of course Shrewsbury’s most famous son is Charles Darwin so he features prominently in the paintings, along with some other more unlikely characters like Desperate Dan and Dennis the Menace! “The finished pieces are amazing – I am thrilled with them and am sure our customers from Shrewsbury and throughout the Midlands will enjoy them as much. “This is the start of a collaboration with Gary and we will be able to show a wonderful collection of similar paintings in the gallery in the future.” Gary Drew regularly travels the world as a commercial artist and his work can be seen in murals in the north and south America and he also specialises in producing pieces for the business and healthcare sector. His Soden Collection paintings also include an image of Charlie Adlard, one of the world’s leading comic book artists, who lives in Shrewsbury. Gary commented: “I love Shrewsbury and so I was so excited to work on this commission. Am looking forward to seeing them on show in such as a stunning and innovative gallery.” The Gary Drew paintings will be on show at the Soden Collection from June 1 priced at £2,450. They will be on display alongside a new exhibition of paintings by leading contemporary artist Endre Röder. “Röder is one of the gallery’s favourite artists. His work is exhibited all over the world and he is widely regarded as one of today’s greatest UK artists so we are very proud and privileged to be hosting this show,” Jonathan added. A preview event will be held on Friday, May 31, with the exhibition starting on June 1.