Brandler Galleries has in its possession a collection of work produced by illustrious Kent-born pop artist Peter Blake. Awarded a CBE in 1983 and a knighthood in 2002 for his services to British art, Blake’s rise began in the late 1950s as he was included in group exhibitions at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, having his first solo exhibition in 1960. Blake’s style has altered somewhat throughout the second half of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Despite a period in the late 1960s and 1970s that featured scenes based on English folklore and characters from Shakespeare, Blake’s predominant medium has been painting, particularly in a collage style.
In addition to his artwork since the 1950s until present – Peter Blake currently has collections in the Tate Gallery in London, the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff, and the Pallant House Gallery in Chichester, among others – Blake has designed a number of renowned music album covers. The Beatles’ ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,’ 1967, Band Aid’s ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas Time,’ 1984, and Eric Clapton’s ‘24 Nights,’ 1991, are examples of the numerous album covers Blake has designed, and his undoubted input on British art and culture.
The work of Peter Blake has historically had a graphic, colourful appearance, constantly borrowing elements from pop culture. Moreover Blake has ‘sourced imagery from popular culture to produce colourful and distinctly graphic works’ (artnet.com). The artist’s ‘Alphabet Series,’ 1991, illustrate his reliance on both pop culture and collage, featuring a varied size of image from pop culture of the past several decades. ‘S is for Sumo,’ for example, consists of twelve varying images of sumo wrestlers, whereas ‘Q is for Quarters’ features a number of different coloured squares, very much in the true style of British pop art. Brandler Galleries’ collection of Peter Blake work is a fascinating presentation of one of the most decorative artists in modern British art.