Artwork Archive: Stephen Fry’s Ever Expanding Brain


From 2014


This composite came to me when I could swear I noticed that actor/raconteur Stephen Fry’s head was becoming elongated. It seemed to be growing taller and taller.

I found this notion amusing, so I concocted a story to accompany the image in which Fry was suffering from some kind of uncontrollable brain growth. Until now, he had successfully disguised it by disappearing occasionally from stage and screen to have his cranial cavity secretly extended or ‘mezzanined’. On each occasion, as I imagined, new ‘floors’ or ‘rooms’ were added to his head by specialist surgeons.

In a further attempt to disguise his condition and once again return to high-profile media work, Fry took to wearing silly tall hats. He even borrowed them from the Pope. The notation on the quadrants of the papal hat in this case signifies the various ‘filing areas’ Fry has assigned to his ever-expanding brain – one for History, one for Maths, Literature, Geography, etc.

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