Dartford, b.1932

Peter Blake

Born in Dartford, Kent in 1932, Peter Blake was a leading figure of the British Pop scene in the 1960s. Blake pushed the boundaries of what—and whom—this predominantly New York-based movement could include. Upon enrolling at the Royal College of Art in London in 1953, he studied alongside other prominent artists such as R.B. Kitaj, Richard Smith, and Joe Tilson. After graduating, Blake began mining mass media and advertising imagery to create homages to the specific genre of popular culture present in Britain.

Since 1962, Peter Blake’s work has been the subject of 56 solo exhibitions, including ten at Waddington Custot Gallery (1969, 1972, 1977, 1978, 1990, 2005, 2010, 2012, 2015, 2016, 2018, London), four at Galerie Claude Bernard (1984, 1995, 2009, 2016, Paris) and three at Wetterling Gallery (1990,...

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Biography

Born in Dartford, Kent in 1932, Peter Blake was a leading figure of the British Pop scene in the 1960s. Blake pushed the boundaries of what—and whom—this predominantly New York-based movement could include. Upon enrolling at the Royal College of Art in London in 1953, he studied alongside other prominent artists such as R.B. Kitaj, Richard Smith, and Joe Tilson. After graduating, Blake began mining mass media and advertising imagery to create homages to the specific genre of popular culture present in Britain.

Since 1962, Peter Blake’s work has been the subject of 56 solo exhibitions, including ten at Waddington Custot Gallery (1969, 1972, 1977, 1978, 1990, 2005, 2010, 2012, 2015, 2016, 2018, London), four at Galerie Claude Bernard (1984, 1995, 2009, 2016, Paris) and three at Wetterling Gallery (1990, 2006, 2012, 2016, Gothenburg and Stockholm). In 1983, Tate Gallery mounted Blake’s first career retrospective, which travelled on to the Kestner Gessellschaft in Hanover. In 2007, the Tate Liverpool presented a second retrospective of Blake’s work, which travelled to the Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao.

Peter Blake’s work has been featured in many landmark museum exhibitions, such as: British Art Today (1962-1963, San Francisco Museum of Art; 1963, Dallas Museum of Contemporary Art, Santa Barbara Museum of Art), London: The New Scene (1965, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Washington Gallery of Modern Art; Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; Seattle Art Museum Pavillion; Vancouver Art Gallery; Art Gallery of Toronto; National Gallery of Canada, Ottowa), British Drawings: The New Generation (1967, Museum of Modern Art, New York), European Painting in the 70s (1975-1976, Los Angeles County Museum of Art; 1976, St. Louis Art Museum; Elvehjem Art Center, Madison, Wisconsin), Forty Years of Modern Art (1986, Tate Gallery, London), Revolution: Art of the Sixties from Warhol to Beuys (1995, Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo).

Most recently, Blake’s work appeared in The Ear of Giacometti: (POST-)Surreal Art from Meret Oppenheim to Mariella Mosler (2010, Galerie Levy, Hamburg), Pop to Popism (2014, Australia’s Art Gallery of New South Wales), International Pop (2015–2016, Walker Art Center, Dallas Museum of Art, Philadelphia Museum of Art) and POP! Art in a Changing Britain (2018, Pallant House Gallery, Chicester)

Blake’s work is in the permanent collections of major museums internationally, including: the Baltimore Museum of Art; the British Council, London; the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon; the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, Bedford; the Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao; the Museum Boymans-Van Beuningen, Rotterdam; the Museum Ludwig, Cologne; the Museum Moderner Kunst, Vienna; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the National Museum Wales; the Royal College of Art, London; the Sintra Museum of Modern Art, Portugal; the Tate, London; the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection, Madrid; the Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery, Carlisle; the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester; and the Wolverhampton Art Gallery.

Artworks

45

Black Cobra, 2019

RELATED CATEGORIES

/ Acrylic and Oil / Acrylic on Canvas / Acrylic Painting / Advertisement Images / Assemblage / Assemblage on Board / British Art / British Pop Art / Drawing / Europe / European Art / Mixed Media / Oil on Canvas / Oil Painting / Painting / Painting on Board / Paper collage / Pop Art / Sculpture / United Kingdom / Watercolor / Watercolor on Paper

CURRICULUM VITAE

Education

  • 1956

    Royal College of Art, London

  • 1951

    Gravesend School of Art, Kent

  • 1949

    Gravesend Technical College and School of Art, Kent

Solo Exhibitions

  • 2019

    Peter Blake: The Artist's Studio, Garth Greenan Gallery, New York

  • 2018

    The Alphabet Suites, Bohun Gallery, Henley-on-Thames 

  • A Life in Drawings and Watercolours, Waddington Custot, London 

Group Exhibitions

  • 2018

    Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London

  • 2016

    POP ART HEROES: Pop, Pin-Ups & Politics, Whitford Fine Art, London

  • Peter Blake Silkscreen Prints, For Arts Sake, The Printmakers Gallery, London

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Curriculum Vitae

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Education

  • 1956

    Royal College of Art, London

  • 1951

    Gravesend School of Art, Kent

  • 1949

    Gravesend Technical College and School of Art, Kent

Solo Exhibitions

  • 2019

    Peter Blake: The Artist's Studio, Garth Greenan Gallery, New York

  • 2018

    The Alphabet Suites, Bohun Gallery, Henley-on-Thames 

  • A Life in Drawings and Watercolours, Waddington Custot, London 

  • 2017

    Be Magnificent: Walthamstow School of Art 1957- 1967, William Morris Gallery, London Hicks Gallery, London

  • 2016

    Peter Blake’s Grand Tour, The Harley Gallery, Worksop, Nottinghamshire

  • Peter Blake: Alphabets, Letters and Numbers, De La Warr Pavilion, East Sussex Porthminster Gallery, St.Ives

  • Sir Peter Blake – Once Upon a Time, Wetterling Gallery, Stockholm

  • Galerie Claude Bernard, Paris 

  • 2015

    Peter Blake: Portraits and People, Waddington Custot Galleries, London

  • 2014

    Llareggub: Peter Blake illustrates Dylan Thomas’s Under Milk Wood, National Museum of Wales, Cardiff (2013-2014)

  • 2013

    Peter Blake: Four Decades, Chelsea Futurespace, London

  • 2012

    Blake’s Artists and Other Collages, Wetterling Gallery, Stockholm

  • Peter Blake and Pop Music, Pallant House Gallery, Chichester

  • Peter Blake: Rock, Paper, Scissors, Waddington Custot Galleries, London

  • 2011

    Peter Blake: World Tour, Mary Ryan Gallery, New York 

  • Peter Blake: A Museum for Myself, The Holburne Museum, Bath

  • 2010

    Homage 10 × 5: Blake’s Artists, Waddington Galleries, London

  • 2009

    Peter Blake’s Polaroids, Opus Art, Newcastle upon Tyne Galerie Claude Bernard, Paris

  • 2008

    Galerie Thomas Levy, Hamburg; Lorenzelli Arte, Milan

  • 2007

    Peter Blake: A Retrospective, Tate Liverpool; Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao

  • 2006

    With a Little Help, Spring Fine Art, Design and Antiques Fair, London

  • Peter Blake: 1975–2005, Bjorn Wetterling Gallery, Stockholm

  • Peter Blake: New Prints and Sculpture, Harley Gallery, Welbeck

  • 2005

    Peter Blake: 1–10 (Collages, Constructions, Drawings & Sculpture) & The Marcel Duchamp Paintings, Waddington Galleries, London

  • 2003

    Artiscope, Brussels

  • Peter Blake: Commercial Art, The London Institute Gallery, London

  • Peter Blake: Sculpture, The London Institute Gallery, London

  • 2002

    Sir Peter Blake / And Now We Are 70, Paul Morris Gallery, New York

  • 2001

    Peter Blake: Alphabet, United Kingdom (2001-2009)

  • 2000

    Peter Blake: About Collage, Tate Liverpool

Group Exhibitions

  • 2018

    Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London

  • 2016

    POP ART HEROES: Pop, Pin-Ups & Politics, Whitford Fine Art, London

  • Peter Blake Silkscreen Prints, For Arts Sake, The Printmakers Gallery, London

  • 2015

    A Strong Sweet Smell of Incense: A Portrait of Robert Fraser, Pace Gallery, London

  • Magnificent Obsessions: The Artist as Collector, Barbican Art Gallery, London

  • International Pop, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; Dallas Museum of Art; Philadelphia Museum of Art

  • 2014

    Pop to Popism, Art Gallery New South Wales, Sydney (2014-2015)

  • 2013

    Pop Imagery, Waddington Custot Galleries, London

  • Pop Art Design, Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein, Germany; Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; Barbican Art Gallery, London; Espoo Museum of Modern Art, Espoo, Finland; Henie-Onstad Kunstsenter, Hovikodden, Norway

  • When Britain Went Pop – British Pop Art: The Early Years, organised by Christie’s and Waddington Custot Galleries, Christie’s Mayfair, London

  • Pop Art to Britart: Modern Masters from the David Ross Collection, Djanogly Art Gallery, Lakeside Arts Centre, Nottingham

  • 2012

    Parallelwelt Zirkus, Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna

  • Freedom not Genius: Works from Damien Hirst’s Murderme Collection, Pinacoteca Agnelli, Turin

  • 2011

    Studies for an Exhibition, David Roberts Art Foundation, London

  • 2010

    Sculpture, Waddington Galleries, London

  • The Ear of Giacometti: (Post-)Surreal Art from Meret Oppenheim to Mariella Mosler, Galerie Levy, Hamburg

  • 2009

    15th Autumn Exhibition, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol

  • 2008

    Peter Blake and John Wesley Tracings: From the 1960s On, Fredericks & Freiser, New York

  • 100 Years, 100 Artists, 100 Works of Art, A Foundation, London

  • Post-War to Pop. Modern British Art: Abstraction, Pop and Op Art, Whitford Fine Art, London

  • L’usage de la parole, Artiscope, Brussels

  • 2007

    Pop Art 1956–1968, Scuderie del Quirinale, Rome (2007-2008)

  • All Tomorrow’s Pictures, Institute of Contemporary Arts, London

  • Pop Art Portraits, National Portrait Gallery, London

  • Pop Art Is …, Gagosian Gallery, London

  • A Tribute to Sir Colin St John Wilson, James Hyman Gallery, London

  • Looking Forward: Thirty Contemporary British Artists, Agnew’s, London

  • White Out, The Fine Art Society, London

  • Sculpture, Waddington Galleries, London

  • 2006

    Good Vibrations: le arti visive e il rock, Papesse Centro Arte Contemporanea, Siena

  • Modern British Art: The First 100 Years, Pallant House Gallery, Chichester

  • 2005

    The Brotherhood of Ruralists and the Pre-Raphaelites, Peter Nahum at The Leicester Galleries, London

  • British Pop, Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao

  • Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London

  • 2004

    Naked, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol

  • An Artist’s Choice: David Remfry Selects, Bohun Gallery, Henley-on-Thames

  • Diamond Dust Volume One, Edinburgh Printmakers, Edinburgh

  • Just what is it that makes British Pop art so different, so appealing?, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, Connecticut

  • Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS): Twenty years, The Mall Galleries, London

  • Pop Art UK: British Pop Art 1956–1972, Palazzo Santa Margherita, Palazzina dei Giardini, Modena

  • Marilyn. Una vida de leyenda, Reales Ataranzanes de Valencia; touring to Centro Cultural de la Villa Plaza de Colon, Madrid

  • Art and the 60s: This Was Tomorrow, Tate Britain, London; touring to Gas Hall, Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery

  • Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London

  • Paintings, Sculpture and Works on Paper, Waddington Galleries, London

  • Modern British Art at Pallant House Gallery, The Pallant House Gallery, Chicester

  • 2003

    Five in One: David Inshaw – Friends and Influences, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol

  • Marilyn Monroe – Life of a Legend, County Hall Gallery, London

  • Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London

  • 2002

    Blast to Freeze: British Art in the 20th Century, Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg; Les Abattoirs, Toulouse (2002-2003)

  • Transition: The London Art Scene in the Fifties, Barbican Art Galleries, London

  • United Kingdom United States, Waddington Galleries, London

  • British Pop Art, Alan Cristea Gallery, London

  • Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London

  • 2001

    Pop Art US / UK Connections, 1956–1966, The Menil Collection, Houston

  • Les Années Pop, Centre Pompidou, Paris

  • Drawing Distinctions: Twentieth Century Drawings and Watercolours from the British Council Collections, Milton Keynes Gallery

  • Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London

  • 2000

    The School of London and their friends: the collection of Elaine and Melvin Merians, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, Connecticut; Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase College State University of New York, Purchase, New York (2000-2001)

  • Defining the Times, Milton Keynes Gallery

  • Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy of Arts, London

Bibliography

  • BOOKS AND CATALOGUES

  • Agnew, Julian. Looking Forward: Thirty Contemporary British Artists. Agnew’s: London, 2007.

  • Alley, Ronald. British Painting Since 1945. London, 1965.

  • Alloway, Lawrence. Pop Art. Thames and Hudson: London, 1965.

  • Amaya, Mario. Pop as Art: A Survey of the New Surrealism. London Studio Vista: London, 1965.

  • Bailey, David and Peter Evans. Goodbye baby and amen; a saraband for the Sixties. Coward-McCann: London, 1969.

  • Barnes, Rachel. The 20th-Century Art Book. Phaidon Press: London, 1997.

  • Blake, Peter. Peter Blake’s Selection Exhibition. Festival Gallery: Bath, 1974.

  • Blake, Peter. Royal Academy Illustrated 2001. Royal Academy of Arts: London, 2001.

  • Blake, Peter, Dawn Ades, Natalie Rudd. Peter Blake about collage. Tate Gallery Publishing: Liverpool, 2000.