Tag Archives: Pop art

Some fascinating information on some Warhol record sleeves.

Well, this week I’m in London looking after my elderly mother (who will be 94 next month) and I visited Daniel Brant at the A and D Gallery in Chiltern Street, just off Baker Street.)

The gallery is currently running an exhibition of pop art – several Rauschenbergs, Warhols and two Wesselmans, A couple of Roy Lichentsteins, a Claes Oldenberg lithograph, a Jasper Johns lithograph and – though not really classical pop art – three or four Julian Opies (of whom I am a fan.)

Daniel’s partner, Helen, plied us with tea as we sat and chinwagged about various aspects of Warhol’s art and Daniel mentioned that the Gallery had put on a show of Billy Name’s work for which they decorated one room with silver foil which they tacked to the walls. Daniel said Billy was a super person, one of the nicest people he hed met. Then we went on to discuss some record covers. Daniel told me that the cover for The Velvet Underground’s “White Light/White Heat” album was not done by Warhol but was one of Billy Name’s photographs. Billy also was responsible for the cover for Nico’s “Chelsea Girl” album – which is listed in the mega format book “Andy Warhol – GIANT Size” as being Andy’s work. Incidentally, I removed my copy of the “Chelsea Girl” LP from my list of Warhol covers a couple of years ago when I saw that the cover was credited to Billy Name. Daniel also told me that the “Index” book was the work of Billy Name – with no Warhol input. I suppose one should have guessed Name’s involvement from the silver cover! However, the “Aspen” box is Warhol’s work.

I showed Daniel my series of “Giant Size $1.57 Each” in order to ask his opinion as to what I could expect as a reasonable sale price. He was quite excited about them, but was sorry to see the “Fiftieth Annoversary” stamp on the back of each cover. Daniel had very recently put on a show of “fake” Warhol works and invited representatives from The Warhol Foundation, who happened to be in London at the time, to attend – which they did. I think Daniel was hoping that they would shut the exhibition down or sue the Gallery but apparently they only applauded. Daniel told several stories about how Warhol had sanctioned reprints of some of his prints and then signed them “put your name here” and “I did not do this” and then signing underneath: “Andy Warhol”! He thought that it would have been better for me NOT to have stamped the covers. He suggested also that it would be cool to repress the LP and include it with my replica covers.

From a discussion about selling the “Giant Size $1.57 Each” covers the coversation quite naturally turned to talk of Warhol associate Billy Klüver. Daniel knew loads about him and had bought a batch of Andy Warhol’s “ones” banknotes from Klüver’s estate after his death. Billy Klüver and Fred Waldhauer together with artists Robert Rauschenberg and Robert Whitman founded the Experiments in Art & Technology (EAT) organisation in 1966. By the early 1980s EAT was in financial difficulty and Billy and Rauschenberg organised a party at which art works would be sold in aid of EAT and there was a casino. Guests at the party were not permitted to bet with real mone but had to buy special banknotes produced in various denominations by the artists. Billy asked Warhol to produce the “one” (one dollar bills) which he did, silkscreening hundreds of bills that were  green on one side and black on the reverse. The only text was the word “ones” and Warhol’s standard rubber stamp with his name (like the one he used on the record covers he designed such as “Sticky Fingers” and “Academy in Peril”)  in white on the green side. Then, Daniel showed me one of the “ones”. Super!

Warhol's $1 bill for the EAT casino.
Warhol’s $1 bill for the EAT casino.

So, you may see a set of my “Giant Size $1.57 Each” covers on Ebay sometime soon but being sold by the A and D Gallery. Look out for them.



Pop Art at Stockholm’s Moderna Museet

I decided to go and see the exhibition of Jean Paul Gaultier’s creations today at Stockholm’s Arkitektur- & designcentrum entitled “The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier – From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk”. A wonderful exhibition that no one should miss, with amazing clothes that blur the standard ideas of gender. No women as underordered obejcts, but rather amazon-like strong characters demanding respect. Nice!

When buying the ticket for the show, I was offered a combination ticket with entry to Moderna Museum as well. “What’s on there?” was my ingenuous question. “Oh, the Pop Art Design exhibition opens today” was the reply, Well, I couldn’t miss that, could I?


…And WOW! what an exhibition! Organised in conjunction with Vitra Degign Muesu, Weil am Rhein, Germany and Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebaek, Denmark, The poster advertising the exhibition showed the cover to “Velvet Underground & Nico” (note: it’s the MONO cover.)


You can imagine my excitement! Unfortunately, photography was forbidden so I have no pictures from the show, but there were classic pieces by Andy Warhol (9 “Flowers”, a beautiful folding screen, Coca-Cola bottles and petrol pump, Brillo boxes), James Rosenquist’s “I Love You With My Ford”, Peter Blake’s “La Vern Baker”, his ex-wife Jann Haworth’s “Cowboy”, Roy Lichtenstein’s “Yellow Brushstroke II”, Richard Hamilton’s “Just What Makes Modern Homes So Different, So Appealing?” and loads of other classic Pop Art pieces by the likes of Jasper Johns and Ed Ruscha.

Richard Hamiltons's "Just What Is It That Makes Modern Homes So Different, So Appealing?"
Richard Hamiltons’s “Just What Is It That Makes Modern Homes So Different, So Appealing?”Brillo boxes, 4 Marlon Brandos), Peter Blake (La Vern Baker), Richard Hamilton (Just What Is It That Makes Modern Homes So Different, So Appealing?), James Rosenquist (I Love You With My Ford), several Claes Oldenbergs and Jann Haworth’s “Cowboy”. There were even a couple of posters; Milton Glaser’s “Dylan” that was included in the US version of “Bob Dylan’s Greatest Hits” album in 1967, Victor Moscoso’s poster for the Chamber Brothers concert – and the cover for “The Velvet Underground & Nico” LP (stereo version). You can tell the difference by how near the top of the cover the “Peel slowly and see” text appears. It is neared the top on the mono cover. The only other record cover was, not surprisingly, “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”. For once credited to Peter Blake, Robert Fraser, Michael Cooper and Jann Haworth, rather than solely to Peter Blake. However, I would suggest a more correct order: Peter Blake, Jann Haworth, Michael Cooper and Robert Fraser. After all, Robert Fraser’s input was only to suggest to Paul McCartney that “a proper artist” should do the cover rather than the psychedelic group “The Fool” if the cover was to stand the test of time – 48 years on he has been proved right.

There were two record covers on show. Obvious choices, both. “The Velvet Underground & Nico” (stereo version in the show) and “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”. Both albums from coincidentaly from 1967. The latter for once given full credit, viz Peter Blake, Robert Fraser, Michael Cooper, Jann Haworth. I would have listed them i a different order: Peter Blake, Jann Haworth, Michael Cooper (who photographed the album cover picture) and Robert Fraser, who’s contribution was to recommend to Paul McCartney that a “proper artist” do the cover rather than the psychedelic group “The Fool” so that the image would have lasting value. He was right. After 46 years the cover is still regarded as a classic of record cover design. There were also a couple of posters; Milton Glaser’s “Dylan”, which was originally issued as an insert to Bob Dylan’s “Greatest Hits” Album in 1967 and a Victor Moscoso San Fransisco poster for (I think) The Chambers Brothers.

The exhibition also included a variety of pop art furniture from the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein. All in all a splendid time is guaranteed for all!

So, if you have the chance, go and see both exhibitions they run until 22nd September.