Artist

Peter Blake

b. 1932

Sir Peter Blake (b. 1932, Dartford, Kent) is a British painter, sculptor, draughtsman and printmaker.  He is known as one of the leading figures of British Pop art. Peter Blake studied at Gravesend School of Art before being accepted into the Royal College of Art, London, where he studied alongside other key British Pop artists, David Hockney, R.B. Kitaj, Joe Tilson, Allen Jones, Peter Phillips and Derek Boshier. After graduating from the Royal College of Art in 1956, Blake began to appropriate pop culture icons and advertising imagery to create homages to the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Brigitte Bardot, Elvis Presley and professional wrestlers. His iconic 1961 ‘Self-portrait with Badges’, in the Tate Collection, shows Blake holding an Elvis album, dressed in American jeans, Converse trainers, and baseball badges; here is the artist as a genuine fan. In other works, he composes assemblages of found objects with humorous allusions to art history and childhood fantasies. In 1967 he designed the iconic album cover for The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in his distinctive style of collage. Blake continues to be associated with the music world by designing album covers. In 1975 Blake co-founded the Brotherhood of Ruralists, a group of artists who moved to Somerset to paint nature.

 

After completing his National Service with the R.A.F., he received the Leverhulme Research Award to study popular art and travelled through Europe 1956-7. Blake’s first one-man exhibition was held in 1962 at the Portal Gallery, London; solo shows followed at the Robert Fraser Gallery, London (1965) and at Leslie Waddington Prints, London (1969). His first retrospective exhibition was held as early as 1969 at the City Art Gallery, Bristol. Subsequent retrospectives were held in 1973 at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, touring to Hamburg and Brussels and the Tate Gallery in 1983. In 1994 he was made the Third Associate Artist of the National Gallery, London. Peter Blake was elected a member of the Royal Academy in 1981, and was knighted in 2002. In 2007 the Tate Liverpool held a major retrospective of Peter Blake’s work which toured to the Museo de Bellas Artes, Bilbao, Spain in 2008. In 2010, Lund Humphries published Peter Blake: One Man Show, a comprehensive monograph by Marco Livingstone.

 

Peter Blake lives and works in London. He is represented worldwide by Waddington Custot. 

 

 

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Works

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'At Work with Peter Blake' installation

Frieze Masters 5-8 October 2017 Waddington Custot
Exhibitions

Peter Blake: Time Traveller

Waddington Custot is pleased to present Peter Blake: Time Traveller, an exhibition dedicated to the groundbreaking exploration of collage by iconic British artist Peter Blake. This comprehensive survey show, which includes a number of important museum loans, investigates the fundamentals of Blake’s practice in collage over a career spanning seven decades, bringing together historic works and never-before-seen pieces. A new monograph, Peter Blake: Collage, which includes a foreword by Blake’s schoolfriend David Hockney, will be published by Thames & Hudson to coincide with the exhibition. 

 

Peter Blake: Time Traveller charts the development of Blake’s approach to collage-making, beginning with his layering of subject matter in early painted compositions and experiments with collaged paper after encountering work by Kurt Schwitters in the 1950s. From here, the exhibition travels via Blake’s rise to prominence as the ‘Godfather of British Pop art’ to his current, self-proclaimed Late Period. From his found object constructions to his most recent digital print photo-collages, Blake has broadened the scope of what collage can comprise and what it can communicate. Peter Blake: Time Traveller includes works from Blake’s Alphabet and Museum of Black and White series, as well as pieces made in homage to fellow artists Sonia Delaunay, Kurt Schwitters and Robert Rauschenberg. Clowns, wrestlers and Icons are shown alongside work around souvenirs and holiday postcards. 

 

The artist’s largest canvas work to date, Late Period: Battle, is seen on view for the first time. The piece, measuring 183.4 x 293.5 cm, was started by Blake in 1964 only to be abandoned and left unfinished until the artist turned to collage to complete the work in 2018. 

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Peter Blake: Time Traveller

Private View

Join us for the Private View of Peter Blake: Time Traveller, an exhibition dedicated to the groundbreaking exploration of collage by iconic British artist Peter Blake.

 

Tuesday 22 June, 5.30–8pm

Waddington Custot

book your 30 minute slot via the link below

Peter Blake: Time Traveller charts the development of Blake’s approach to collage-making, beginning with his layering of subject matter in early painted compositions and experiments with collaged paper after encountering work by Kurt Schwitters in the 1950s. From here, the exhibition travels via Blake’s rise to prominence as the ‘Godfather of British Pop art’ to his current, self-proclaimed Late Period.⁠

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