Sir Peter Blake Exhibition @ Wetpaint Gallery by Sarah Edmonds

There is now only one week left to see an exhibition of rare and popular prints by Sir Peter Blake, ‘the Godfather of British Pop Art’ at the Wetpaint Gallery in Chalford.

100 Sources of Pop Art

100 Sources of Pop Art

Blake is best known for creating the sleeve for the Beatles album cover Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. It has become an iconic piece of work, much imitated, and catapulted Blake into the heart of the swinging sixties London art scene. America has Warhol and we are proud to have Blake.

The exhibition is a riot of colour, contemporary and relevant to both young and old, pops of colour on a grey day in Stroud. His signature icons and pop ephemera are still evident, collage, portraits in poster style with titles as quirky as his work, Thor the Enforcer, one of the portraits of his much loved wrestlers and Getting In Over My Head, the artwork for the 5th studio album by Brian Wilson. I’m struck by how accessible the work is for an artist with such a pedigree. Glittery union jacks could hang on any wall, Beano collages that make you smile.

I’m drawn to 100 Sources of Pop Art – the largest piece in the exhibition, a limited edition silk screen with diamond dust, glitter and glazes depicting one hundred pop icons and prints that have inspired his work. Sadly it’s price on application, but it won’t fit in my car anyhow. Prices start at just £795 and each and every piece must surely be a collector’s item.

Getting In Over My Head and Union Jack

A graduate of the prestigious Royal College of Art, Blake received a CBE in 1983, and was knighted in 2002. He was a West Country resident for a time, living near Bath, but now lives in London where he’s still painting.

An old friend of Blakes, Jinty Stephenson, recently sold a piece of his work for £350,000 having paid for it in instalments in the 60’s - £3 every Saturday when they met at the pub each week. She was a fellow art student and a bit strapped for cash!

Celia Wickham, director of the Wetpaint Gallery Online is one of the energetic pioneers of contemporary art in the area, bringing the very highest quality exhibitions to her Chalford gallery which is situated directly opposite the Lavender Bakehouse. Wetpaint moved here from Cirencester at the end of last year, and we can expect to see exciting monthly exhibits. The backbone of her business is now online where she hopes to develop her portfolio of high profile clients.

The artistic community in Stroud never rests on its laurels – it’s an exciting place to live if you love art, thanks to people like Celia who bring international artists right to our doorstep.

The exhibition is on now and runs until Sat 1st October; visit for further info...

What’s coming up next at Wetpaint…

A Life in Sculpture - Talk and book signing with Sophie Ryder - 15th October 2017

From Cheltenham to Chalford – following her talk at the Cheltenham Literature Festival, sculptress Sophie Ryder joins Celia Wickham at the Wetpaint Gallery to discuss her new book “A Life in Sculpture”. Best known locally for her wire sculptures of mythical creatures, hares and hybrid beings she will share secrets of her inspiration and fascinating life. An exhibition of her work will be at Wetpaint from 6th – 29th October.

Sarah Edmonds is an Italian graduate from University College London, where she also studied History of Art and a short course at Slade School of Fine Art. She's been a tour guide in Tuscany and now works in marketing for Authentic Adventures, a travel company based in Stonehouse that specialises in painting holidays.