Peter Blake is known by the dutch art lovers as one of the first Pop Art artist who had the opportunity to exhibit at the Stedelijk Museum, Together with this exhibition an excellent catalogue designed by Wim Crouwel was published , bu apart from that his work is becoming more and more important every year. The same with Paolozzi works , this Pop Art is original and authentic and where it was almost forgotten 30 years ago it is now considered among the best art from the 60’s.
Without knowing, many people have admired Peter Blake’s works and are familiar with it . This, because he was the painter and designer of the Beatles Sgt Pepper album. He even made a second version for Liverpool being cultural capital of Europe in 2008.
In the original 1967 work, the Beatles form the centrepiece wearing colourful military-style outfits while their wax models also feature. However, in the 2012 piece, the faces of Ringo Starr and the late John Lennon and George Harrison have all been omitted.
And even Sir Paul McCartney has been relegated to the third row – one behind his daughters Stella, the fashion designer, and Mary, the photographer. Blake, known as the Godfather of Pop Art, has put his own face and images of his family where the Fab Four once stood.
Blake painted several album sleeves. He designed the sleeve for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band with his wife Jann Haworth, the American-born artist whom he married in 1963 and divorced in 1979. The Sgt. Pepper’s sleeve has become an iconic work of pop art, much imitated and Blake’s best-known work. Producing the collage necessitated the construction of a set with cut-out photographs and objects, such as flowers, centred on a drum (sold in auction in 2008) with the title of the album. Blake has subsequently complained about the one-off fee he received for the design (£200), with no subsequent royalties. Blake made sleeves for the Band Aid single, “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” (1984), Paul Weller’s Stanley Road (1995) and the Ian Dury tribute album Brand New Boots and Panties (2001; Blake was Dury’s tutor at the Royal College of Art in the mid-60s). He designed the sleeves for Pentangle’s Sweet Child and The Who’s Face Dances (1981), which features portraits of the band by a number of artists.
There are some excellent publications on Blake available at www.ftn-books.com