Peter Blake’s World Tour at the Mary Ryan Gallery

The Butterfly Man, Paris by Peter Blake

British pop artist Peter Blake never really became a household name here in the US despite having designed one of the most famous and iconic album covers of all time; that of the Beatles’ Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. While  Blake is often called “the Godfather of Pop Art” – and his work is widely shown and collected throughout Europe – he has rarely shown in the United States. World Tour, now on display through June 18th, 2011 at New York’s Mary Ryan Gallery is only his third exhibition in New York since 1962.

The World Tour exhibit features 10 collages on paper and canvas that depict famous cities such as New York, Paris, Los Angeles, Venice and Tokyo. The mixed media pieces combine real imagery (vintage postcards and photographs) with Blake’s inventive additions, including the  “Butterfly Man” character who travels the world releasing swarms of colorful and exotic butterflies.  These large-size canvases are whimsical and imaginative but all so very relatable, especially to anyone who has traveled to these exciting cities. I was very fortunate to meet the 79-year-old artist at the opening reception this past week. Blake was very gracious and even signed a postcard see  (image above) for my collection. World Tour is a very fun exhibit, and family-friendly, and is highly recommended for your next Chelsea gallery crawl.

Butterfly Man, LA

The Mary Ryan Gallery is Located at 527 West 26th Street, New York NY. Gallery Hours are Tuesday – Saturday, 10 AM to 6 PM.

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