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Fri 16th June 2017
Abbot Hall Gallery in Cumbria celebrates British pop painting this summer

14 July to 7 October 2017

Opening on Friday 14 July, the award-winning Abbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal, presents Painting Pop. This must-see summer exhibition celebrates British Pop Art from the early 1960s, including work by Sir Peter Blake, Pauline Boty, Patrick Caulfield, Richard Hamilton, David Hockney and Allen Jones borrowed from major collections such as Tate, National Portrait Gallery and Government Art Collection.

The exhibition is a colourful and striking celebration of British Pop painting. It focuses on the period around 1962, a pivotal year for Pop Art in Britain, with a number of important solo and group shows taking place in London, including Four Young Artists at the Institute of Contemporary Arts and Image in Progress at the Grabowski Gallery. This was a crucial time for the general public’s awareness of Pop, as well as a more rooted and growing interest in popular culture. In the UK, the end of all food rationing in 1954 resulted in the start of consumer culture and brand marketing.

Post-war Britain experienced a burgeoning freedom of expression in young adults following the austerity of the immediate period after WW2, and mainstream media were picking up on the current trends in painting as much as the rise in celebrity and the phenomena of fanaticism emerging in teenage behaviour. 1962 was also the year that The Beatles released their debut single ‘Love Me Do’, and when Ken Russell’s film ‘Pop Goes the Easel’, commissioned from for BBC’s Monitor arts’ strand, was broadcast on television first in March 1962.  

About the lives of four hip and swinging painters, Peter Blake, Derek Boshier, Pauline Boty and Peter Philips, the film was aired mere months before Abbot Hall Art Gallery opened its doors to the public for the first time - at the start of the decade that would later bring televised footage of the moon landings and England’s World Cup winning moment transmitted into people’s homes.

Accompanying the exhibition will be an events programme. This includes a series of talks,  live music and family friendly activities to involve everyone in the electrifying world of Pop. 

More information about the exhibition and events can be found on the Abbot Hall website.