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Horace Panter Exhibition Birmingham

Horace Panter Exhibition Birmingham
Horace Panter is a musician and artist, best known as one of the founding members of the Ska band “The Specials”. The band gained popularity in the late 70s and early 90s with politically charged songs like “Ghost Town”, and “Too much, too young”, despite his history as a musician Panter studied Fine art at Coventry University in 1972, and has been creating art ever since.

We’re excited to be hosting Panter’s latest Exhibition “Across America” which features work from the artist himself as well as curated pieces from David Hockney and Andy Warhol. The exhibition starts on 15th February 2023 and runs until 4th March 2023.

Horace Panter and the Pop Art movement

When looking through Panter’s art work, both past and present there’s no doubt that his influences lie in Pop Art.

What is Pop Art?

Pop art is an abbreviation of Popular Art. Its influences are in pop culture, with references to television, films, music and celebrity. The movement emerged in the 1950s and is characterised by hard edges and bright colours.  

Influences for the exhibition

The “Across America” Exhibition is inspired by Panter’s travels across America while on tour with The Specials in early 2022. The collection captures the same boldness as his previous Americana collection, featuring rich colours, flat planes, and high levels of contrast.  
Speaking to the Artist on his work and influences from the Pop Art world, Panter said;
“For this series of paintings, the majority of the reference came from my trip to America and the photographs I took while I was there.
“I have always been fascinated by the country, from a child playing Cowboys and Indians to the incredible musicians they have produced. It’s where my heroes lived and so when I started touring there with The Specials, it lived up to all my expectations and more”.
“Everything is so much bigger, brighter and bolder over there, even the sky is different. It’s all about the bigger picture - wider roads, the garish signs, the deep blue skies. It's so different from England. In fact I was talking to an American when I was there and they were amazed at what I was looking at. They said it would take someone from England to see these things that were so normal to them. These are all the reasons why it falls beautifully into the Pop Art world and I just find it so interesting and inspiring,”

David Hockney

David Hockney is one of Panter’s biggest influences. Arguably one of the most influential British Artists of the 20th Century, Hockney’s most popular pool scene has been stylised by Panter in his previous work celebrating the Beano. Hockney’s studies of light and colour are also seen to be an influence on Panter in the use of oversaturated tones, and bold lines.  

‘Dawn, Texas!’, a painting which will be in the exhibition

“Across America” features curated pieces by David Hockney which are not to be missed, which gives audiences a rare opportunity to see Panter’s work side by side with some of his biggest inspirations.

Andy Warhol

Another influential artist whose work has had a huge impact on Panter’s career is Andy Warhol. Warhol, one of the pioneers of Pop Art, is known for his commentary on popular culture and celebrity. This is carried through into Panter’s work, which is entwined with both his music and artistic career.
The latest exhibition puts Panter’s and Warhol’s work shoulder to shoulder and allows audiences to explore the work of Panter alongside the work that has inspired him the most.
Speaking about the exhibition Panter said “It’s very rare that I get to see all the paintings in one place because of the process I use for framing and getting prints made. Signed limited edition prints will also be available at the exhibition.
“I’m very much looking forward to seeing them all together again, and being back in Birmingham with Tim and everyone from Colley Ison Gallery,” he added.
Gallery Director Timothy Ison said: “It is of course always a pleasure to see Horace again and be able to show this wonderful collection.
“It’s going to be a great exhibition and will follow on perfectly from the Andy Warhol show which runs until Saturday 11 February,” he added.
 If you’re interested in the exhibition, this celebration of Pop Art will be running between the 15th  February -4th March 2023 at the gallery and is free to attend, Horace will be at the gallery on Saturday 18th February to give visitors to the gallery an opportunity to speak directly to him about his work and influences. So, come and  visit us at 85-89 Colmore Row, our opening times are 10-6pm Monday-Friday and 10-4pm on Saturday.


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