Peter Blake (1932-) Born in Dartford, Kent.
Attended the Junior Art Department of Gravesend Technical College and School
of Art from 1946 to 1949 and subsequently Gravesend School of Art from
1949 to 1951. Having been accepted at the Royal College of Art, London
in 1950, he carried out his National Service in the RAF (1951-53) and went
on to study at the Royal College from 1953, gaining a First Class Diploma
in 1956. Blake received a Leverhulme Research Award to study popular art,
taking him to Holland, Belgium, France, Italy and Spain for a year from
1956 to 1957. He went on to teach at St Martin’s School of Art, London
(1960-62), Harrow School of Art (1960-63), Walthamstow School of Art (1961-64)
and at the Royal College of Art (1964-76).
In 1961, Blake received First Prize in the Junior Section at the John
Moores Liverpool Exhibition. This led to his first one-man exhibition,
held the following year at the Portal Gallery, London and subsequent solo
shows at the Robert Fraser Gallery, London (1965) and at Leslie Waddington
Prints, London (1969). Since the early '70s, his work has been exhibited
regularly in one-man shows throughout the world, including the Stedelijk
Museum, Amsterdam, touring throughout Europe (1973-74), Galerie Claude
Bernard, Paris (1984), Nishimura Gallery, Tokyo (1988) and the Govinda
Gallery, Washington D.C. (1992).
His first Retrospective exhibition was held as early
as 1969 at the City Art Gallery, Bristol. Subsequent Retrospectives were
held in 1973, touring to Amsterdam, Hamburg, Brussels and Arnhem and
at the Tate Gallery, London in 1983, touring to Hanover. Blake’s
work has also been included in numerous key group exhibitions on an annual
basis since 1954.
In 1975 he was the founding member of the Brotherhood
of Ruralists, along with Jann Haworth, Ann and Graham Arnold, David Inshaw
and Annie and Graham Ovenden. They first exhibited as a group in the
Royal Academy’s Summer
Exhibition in 1976 and had a major group exhibition at the Arnolfini Gallery,
Bristol in 1981, touring to Birmingham, Glasgow and the Camden Arts Centre,
In 1985, Blake designed the poster for Live Aid,
the world’s largest
ever multi-national pop concert in aid of famine relief in Africa. Similarly,
in 1995 he was commissioned to design of the cover of Paul Weller’s
album, Stanley Road.
Peter Blake was elected Royal Academician in 1981 (ARA 1974) and was awarded
the CBE in 1983. In 1994 he was made the Third Associate Artist of the
National Gallery, London, and in 1998 he received an Honorary Doctorate
from the Royal College of Art, London. Blake lives and works in London.