|Patricia Knight II, 1982|
So today marks the death of the oft-called "father of pop art".
Actually, he wouldn't really have called himself that. He recently denounced the term, saying it better describes "Elvis Presley and rather vulgar American imagery of ice cream cones or hamburgers".
Well, all right then Rich, but your work does in fact feel like pop; albeit cleverly sidestepping out-and-out vulgarity while still remaining healthily provocative.
I believe a brief retrospective is in order.
Born, London. 1922. Early sketches display his skill as a draftsman (he was trained as an engineering one during the second world war), and a propensity towards playful abstractions of form.
|from Reaper, 1949|
|from Reaper, 1949|
The artist studied and worked in London before founding the Independent Group at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in the 1950's; where he, along with several artists, helped to kick of the Pop Art movement. By this time we see his characteristic use of collage to, rather humorously, thrust the zeitgeist of contemporary culture upon the canvas
|Just What Is It that Makes Today's Homes So Different, So Appealing?, 1956 |
|Adonis in Y Fronts, 1963|
|Interior II, 1964|
|The Solomon R. Guggenheim, 1964|
In later years he developed a fondness for photographs, often appropriating snaps from the press and doctoring them up a bit. He had quite a relationship with this one, which depicted Mick Jagger handcuffed to his art dealer buddy Robert Fraser, just after the two of them had just been convicted on drug charges.
|Swingeing London, 1968|
|Stage Proof 1, 1971|
|Stage Proof 4, 1971|
|Stage Proof 5, 1971|
|Stage Proof 13, 1971|
|Stage Proof 19, 1971|
In the last couple of decades his work has had a decidedly more political edge, getting itself mixed up in issues like war, Thatcherism, war, Tony Blair...
|The Treatment Room (Installation), 1984|
|The State, 1993|
|Shock and Awe, 2007|
[And do keep an eye out for his upcoming retrospective exhibition. Supposedly coming through London, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Madrid in 2012.]
|A Dedicated Follower of Fashion, 1980|
|Marcel Duchamp, 1967|