Stephen Wiltshire: genius city illustrator

After flying over London in a helicopter, Stephen Wiltshire could reproduce by memory a detailed aerial illustration of a four-square mile area in under three hours that included 12 historic landmarks and 200 other structures.

He has done similar illustrations of New York, Tokyo, San Francisco, Frankfurt, and is currently in Madrid doing the same. On his way back to London, he will be stopping in Dubai, Jerusalem and Sydney. He was diagnosed autistic with Savant syndrome when he was 3; drawing became his way of communicating with the world.

Known as the “human camera”, he remembers what he sees by the memories that were provoked in the observation process — and he only has to see things once. At the age of 13, he was called “the best child artist in Britain” by the BBC and more recently he was named by Queen Elizabeth II as a Member of the Order of the British Empire in recognition of his services to the art world.

Watch this video and what you see is a 34-year old, confident, artistic genius. Absolutely amazing.