Peter Blake is an English artist from England, best known for his pop art collage pieces and for designing the record sleeve for the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.
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Facts About Peter Blake
- Peter Blake was born in Dartford, UK, in 1932.
- He was evacuated from London as a child during World War II.
- He attended Gravesend Technical College and the Royal College of Art in London.
- His work titled On the Balcony was produced in the mid-1950s and combines pop culture images with fine art. Although it looks like a collage, all of the elements are painted.
- Other of his early works of pop art include Self-Portrait With Badges, Girls with Their Hero, Captain Webb Matchbook, and The First Real Target.
- His artwork was shown at the 1961 Young Contemporaries exhibition alongside the work of David Hockney and R. B. Kitaj.
- He was also featured in a BBC pop art documentary called Pop Goes the Easel in 1962.
- He famously designed the album sleeve for the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band LP, but he has provided artwork for numerous other records, including Stanley Road by Paul Weller (1995), Stop the Clocks by Oasis (2006), Face Dances by The Who (1981), I Still Do by Eric Clapton (2016), and the Band Aid Do They Know It’s Christmas? charity single (1984).
- In addition to his pop art work, Peter Blake has also produced paintings. In the early 1970s, he completed a series of watercolour paintings to illustrate an edition of Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll.
- In 1991, he painted a portrait of the wrestler Kendo Nagasaki.
- In 2008, Peter Blake created an updated version of his Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album artwork to support Liverpool’s bid to become European Capital of Culture 2008.
- He updated the artwork again in 2012 to celebrate his 80th birthday. The new collage featured images of people who he had admired and been influenced by during his long career, including Twiggy, JK Rowling, Grayson Perry, Amy Winehouse, Noel Gallagher, Paul Weller, Mick Jagger, Vivienne Westwood, Tom Stoppard, and Elvis Costello.
- He is a supporter of Chelsea FC, and in 2010, he produced a collage to promote their 2010 kit.
- He created the London Stands Together poster in 2020, and it was distributed via the Evening Standard newspaper.
- Peter Blake was knighted in 2002 for services to art.
- In 2005 he produced a set of collages titled Homage to Schwitters, based on the work of Kurt Schwitters.
- Although he admired the Beatles, he was a bigger fan of the Beach Boys, and he also enjoyed the music of the Four Freshman, Dionne Warrick, Chet Baker, the Hi-Lo’s, the Kirby Stone Four, and Bo Diddley.
- He is a big admirer of the work of Simon Rodia.
- Some of his favourite books include Under Milk Wood by Dylan Thomas, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Ulysses by James Joyce.
- He has vast collections of items and objects, including taxidermy, puppets, ornaments, toys, and folk art.