This first complete overview of collage by Peter Blake, from his early assemblages to his most recent work has been published by Waddington Custot in partnership with Thames & Hudson.
The publication coincides with the opening of “Peter Blake: Time Traveller”, a new exhibition at Waddington Custot [until 13 August] charting 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. [from the Waddington Custot website].
Boty makes an appearance in both the book and the exhibition, including within Blake’s recent collage series Joseph Cornell’s Holiday.
Peter Blake: Time Traveller 18 June–13 August 2021 Waddington Custot, 11 Cork Street, London W1S 3LT
Time slots for the exhibition can be booked here: [link]
Title: Peter Blake: Collage Publisher: Waddington Custot in partnership with Thames & Hudson Format: Hardback without Jacket Dimensions: 300 x 250mm Pages: 316 pp ISBN: 9780500971123 Price: £50
I would like to thank the BBC Photo Library for their assistance in confirming that copyright for the images of Pauline Boty’s works shown in Ken Russell’s 1962 documentary Pop Goes the Easel resides with the Estate of Pauline Boty, and am delighted therefore to be able to include them on this website. Commissioned by BBC Television for its Monitor series, Russell’s film includes 16 of Boty’s works shown initially full screen and face-on and then side-on whilst she sat with Peter Blake to discuss their content and sources of imagery. The titles aren’t discussed, but as mentioned in the previous News item, the hope is to ultimately match at least some of them to those of works exhibited in the Blake, Boty, Porter, Reeve exhibition which took place at the AIA Gallery whilst the programme was being filmed.
For UK viewers, Pop Goes the Easel is currently available on iPlayer here: [link]
Much thanks are due to Geoffrey Reeve for sending in a copy of the list of works that include those shown by Pauline Boty in the group exhibition Blake, Boty, Porter, Reeve at the AIA Gallery in London in late 1961 which have now been added to the Collages listed here on the website. Many of these works, now sadly presumed lost, made an appearance in Ken Russell’s Pop Goes the Easel, originally broadcast by the BBC as part of the Monitor series of arts programme on 25th March 1962. Ultimately it is hoped further research will enable at least some of the lost collages shown in the film to be matched to their titles.