The Armory Show 2018 - British Pop
8th – 11th March 2018
The emergence of Pop Art coincided with the surge in printmaking during the 1960s, and the graphic flair displayed by many of the movement’s protagonists was perfectly suited to expression in the many processes on offer: not just … etching and lithography relying on hand-made marks, for which art school training had prepared David Hockney, Allen Jones and others, but also processes such as photolithography and especially screenprinting, newly introduced into a fine art context from industry and the commercial realm of advertising, posters and packaging.
– Marco Livingstone in Wild Things: British Pop prints of the 1960s and 1970s
Following the success of their David Hockney single artist stand at Armory 2017, this year Lyndsey Ingram presents a focused group show of British Pop prints. Artists include Joe Tilson, Patrick Caulfield, Richard Hamilton, David Hockney and Gerald Laing.
Pop Art – a term coined by British artist Richard Hamilton – gained momentum as an international movement, although much of the
focus has been on its American incarnation. Key figures in Britain also contributed to this bold global discourse, focusing on inter-
national issues, as well as those more specific to life in post-war Britain – a dialogue that makes viewing these works in the context of New York particularly interesting.
Each of the selected artists played a key role in the early development of Pop art. All were avid printmakers and chose specifically to use printmaking as a medium, recognising its natural synergy with the mass media world around them and addressing subjects of repro-
duction and originality, commercial production and the appropriated image. This carefully curated selection of works exhibits elements of social commentary, political activism, and contemporary imagery that typified artistic production in a Britain attempting to emerge from its post-war past, while redefining the parameters of art, in order to look forward.
‘Pop art is so often dominated by the major American figures, it’s exciting to bring their British contemporaries to New York, where we will show an equally important though often overlooked aspect of this international movement,’ says Lyndsey Ingram. ‘It was such a joy to have a booth of David Hockney’s work at the Armory in 2017, and we are delighted to open our 2018 booth up to show Hockney and his contemporaries, focusing on the work they produced in the 1960s and early 1970s at the height of Pop art movement.’
Highlights of the stand include Joe Tilson’s New York Decals (1967). The artist returned from a visit to New York with paper ephemera and proceeded to immortalise these graphic fragments as prints. Embracing the new technology of the commercial graphic world, he made complex photographic transfers to create giant replicas of the fragments. It is a collage that blurs the distinction between two- and three-dimensional space.
Other highlights include David Hockney’s Alka Seltzer (1961), one of his earliest prints and one that directly references a mass-produced consumer product. In addition, Lyndsey Ingram will present Richard Hamilton’s People (1968), an extremely rare photographic print, retouched by hand, and his iconic Release (1972) showing Mick Jagger and the art dealer Robert Fraser handcuffed in the back of a London cab, an image derived from a famous newspaper photograph.
This show is accompanied by a printed catalogue, including a commissioned scholarly essay on the development of British Pop printmaking by scholar Marco Livingstone.