The Doodle Boy Unites Art and Legacy: Celebrating Charles Darwin in Shrewsbury

Meet Joe Whale, the 13-year-old artistic sensation, globally known as The Doodle Boy, who hails from Shrewsbury. With his extraordinary talent catching the attention of esteemed figures like Prince William and Kate, and even leading to a major collaboration with Nike, Joe is now embarking on a remarkable artistic endeavor that draws parallels between his own talent and the legacy of Shrewsbury’s most celebrated son, Charles Darwin.

On Friday, July 21, 2023, at 1:00 PM to which ALL ARE INVITED, The Doodle Boy will create a masterpiece on an 8ft x 5ft canvas at the heart of Shrewsbury, precisely at the town library – the former Shrewsbury School building where Charles Darwin attended as a child. The young artist aims to pay tribute to Darwin’s legacy and inspire curiosity for The Darwin200 project, encouraging others to explore nature and appreciate our planet’s diversity.

The artwork, crafted in front of the iconic Charles Darwin statue at 3:00 PM, will unite the past and present, symbolizing the intertwining of The Doodle Boy’s artistic ingenuity with Darwin’s scientific contributions. Renowned naturalist Stewart McPherson, along with Andrew Fox, the visionaries behind the Darwin200 tall ship journey, will witness The Doodle Boy’s astounding creative process and honor Shrewsbury’s unique connection to Charles Darwin.

The Darwin200 voyage, departing from Plymouth, England on Saturday, August 15, 2023, will follow Darwin’s ‘sea-steps,’ visiting 32 ports worldwide. Guided by 200 talented young Darwin leaders aged 18-25 and supported by esteemed Conservation NGOs, this global expedition seeks to honor Darwin’s legacy and further scientific understanding – continuing where Darwin left off.

The involvement of The Doodle Boy in the Darwin200 project holds profound significance, highlighting the remarkable connection between this young artist and his hometown. Notably, the artwork will also raise funds for four Darwin charities, emphasizing the fusion of art, legacy, and conservation.

Shrewsbury will bear witness to The Doodle Boy’s artistic brilliance as he captures the essence of the awe-inspiring voyage within his creation over an hour. Through his art, The Doodle Boy’s work will serve as a testament to Shrewsbury’s rich heritage and the enduring spirit of exploration and innovation that runs through its veins.

As Stewart McPherson eloquently puts it: “Conservation is not about what we have lost, but what we still have. The Doodle Boy is breathing life into our common goal,” signifying the powerful impact of art and passion in preserving our natural world.


Sign up to receive our newsletter

Be the first to know about new artwork, exhibitions, events and artists!