Tag Archives: Peter Blake

Bob Dylan art: worth collecting? A good investment? The Drawn Blank Series 2008-2014

Bob Dylan art

Woman in Red Lion Pub, Man On A Bridge, Train Tracks: stars of Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series 2008-2014

Is Bob Dylan art worth collecting?

Yes.  To be precise, some Bob Dylan art is worth collecting.

Is Bob Dylan art also a good investment?  Yes, it can be – but you need to know exactly what you’re buying.

Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series 2008-2014

You get a fair idea which Bob Dylan art is worth collecting and/or a good investment at Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series 2008-2014, an impressive – and revealing – retrospective exhibition running at Castle Fine Art, 24 Bruton Street, London W1 until 29 November.  It’s well worth a journey – you can spend a couple of enjoyable hours there.

Bob Dylan art

Bob Dylan art, Drawn Blank Series 2008-14, London W1

Bob Dylan art: worth collecting?

Not all Drawn Blank prints were created equal. Bob Dylan paintings first appeared at an exhibition at Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz in 2007-2008. Chemnitz is a small city west of Dresden – a fairly remote place in the former DDR, hence an ideal venue for Bob Dylan to test the waters with his painting.

Bob Dylan art

Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series, Chemnitz exhibition catalogue

The 92 sketches in Drawn Blank, Dylan’s 1994 book, were transformed into 322 different gouache and watercolour images, from which the 170 works exhibited at Chemnitz were selected.

A few of these paintings were also used for Washington Green’s first (2008) release of limited edition prints, but most of the publisher’s images appear to be slightly different gouache and water colour tableaux developed from the 1994 drawings.

How many of the 300 or so works in The Drawn Blank Series you’d want to see on your wall is a subjective matter.  There’s a few dozen pieces that I’d be happy to hang alongside those of more critically acclaimed artists featured in ROCK ART EDITIONS, such as Richard Hamilton, Andy Warhol and Peter Blake.

I’d consider buying about another third of the prints. But I struggle to enthuse over the rest of the works in Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series.

As I argued in a recent post on ROCK ART EDITIONS, I find The Drawn Blank Series 2014 to be a mixed bag. I love three of the eight images released, including a new colour version of Woman In Red Lion Pub, a familiar favourite. The other five? They don’t do it for me.

Bob Dylan art: a good investment?

In addition to judging Bob Dylan art as a collector, potential investors will also assess the work for its potential future growth in value.

Let’s start by considering three star performers in the current Castle Fine Art exhibition. If, on release in 2008, you’d bought Medium (36″ x 28″) versions of Man On A Bridge, Woman in Red Lion Pub and Train Tracks (photograph above), at £1,995 each (unframed), you would already be looking at a substantial capital gain: they are valued in this exhibition at £12,850, £12,850 and £15,350 respectively – a total of over £41,000, for an outlay of under £6,000.

But remember – that’s the value of these three limited editions from the 2008 release in the Medium size. Other releases and sizes of the same images haven’t performed as well. For example, the Standard (ie smaller, 27.5″ x 22″) Man On A Bridge and Woman in Red Lion Pub from the 2011 release are priced at £3,750, with the 2012 Man release at £2,750.

And remember – these prices are quoted by a gallery allied to the publisher of The Drawn Blank Series, a gallery trying to sell the whole collection. So these exhibition prices should be regarded as indicative, rather than definitive.  Establishing a more accurate open market value for these three prints would require an analysis of pricing and sales data from independent dealers, eBay and, notably, the major auction houses.

This trio of images – Man On A Bridge, Woman in Red Lion Pub and Train Tracks – are, arguably, the pick of the Drawn Blank crop. They are very desirable artefacts to own and hang on your wall, but you need to carefully consider their investment potential.

Bob Dylan art

Bob Dylan Drawn Blank Series: three Portfolios, 2008

The Portfolios – in this case, packages of different versions of the same image – are probably not as good investments as the individual prints.  For example, the Standard sized 2008 Portfolio of four versions of Train Tracks 2008 is now priced at £28,500, while the 2008 Portfolio of four Man On A Bridge prints is on sale here for £13,500, almost the same price as the Medium 2008 individual graphic.

Bob Dylan limited editions – how limited?

How limited is a Bob Dylan limited edition print?

Take the wonderful Man On a Bridge as an example, again. The original 2008 Medium print – the one which has soared in value – was produced in a limited edition of 295 – a very acceptable limit to the edition.

Bob Dylan art

Bob Dylan, Man On A Bridge 2008

But those 295 aren’t the end of the story. The image has also been released in different colours, different sizes, different packages and different media between 2008 and 2014.

Only 295 of Medium size Man On a Bridge prints (the high value one) were released in 2008. But count the copies released in the different versions, add those sold in sets and complete collections, not to mention Artist’s Prints and Printer’s Prints, and you begin to realise that “limited edition” is an elastic concept.

A quick calculation indicates that there are over 3,000 officially released copies of Man On A Bridge in the wild right now. And who knows how many more releases the piece will see?

You could, of course, argue that an aggregate edition of a few thousand is no barrier to purchasing a Bob Dylan artefact as an investment. After all, the recent Bob Dylan The Lyrics Since 1962 was released in a limited edition of 3,000. That seemed to me like an unnecessarily small edition, probably a commercial miscalculation by publishers Simon and Schuster, and I ordered my copy without a second thought.

Despite a relentless programme of annual releases since 2008, only a proportion of the images shown at Chemnitz or, indeed, catalogued by Washington Green in their handsome 2008 monograph, have been released so far. Many owners will be hoping that the weaker prints offered for sale in 2014 might indicate that the well is running dry.

Artist and publisher are, of course, within their rights to keep releasing new Drawn Blank Series artwork for as long as there is unsatisfied demand from collectors and investors.

Bob Dylan art: original Drawn Blank Series paintings

In addition to the limited edition prints, within the reach of most potential buyers, many of the original paintings (from which the limited editions were printed) were put on sale from 2008.

You’d expect them to be mostly sold. Many are reportedly valued in the low hundreds of thousands of pounds. An acrylic Man On A Bridge, wearing a fetching brown-grey coat, on display at the Castle Fine Art exhibition, has a six-figure price tag.

And whether the 300+ originals prepared for Chemnitz have been – or will be – sold is unknown. They could double the number of original, high value Drawn Blank artworks in circulation.

Do your research, get safeguards

If you are tempted to buy a piece of Bob Dylan art from this series, your first step might be to work out exactly why you want to buy it: would you be buying as a fan? A collector? Or an investor?

Whatever your motive, you need to do some homework: information is available to help you reduce risk – in exhibition and sales catalogues, as well as online resources.

Once you’ve decided to buy a piece, you need to check that it’s genuine. You’ll insist on a certificate of authenticity, and reliable information on the artwork’s provenance. You’re obviously safest with an established outlet in the Castle Galleries chain, or one of the independent UK galleries supplied with stock by publishers Washington Green.

But, beyond these outlets, it’s a good bet that there will be fake Dylan prints doing the rounds already: thieves abound on the fringes of the art world and the Dylan Universe. They target mugs who don’t know what they’re buying.

Caveat emptor!

Bob Dylan art: how good is it?

To summarise: some Bob Dylan art from The Drawn Blank Series 2008-2014 is probably a good investment. But do your homework before you buy.

If you’re buying a print from Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series purely for pleasure, you’ll have a piece of Bob Dylan hanging on your wall, complete with signature – even if it drops in value.

And make no mistake: the Drawn Blank Series 2008-2014 exhibition underlines Bob Dylan’s credentials as an artist to be taken seriously.  His portraits and cityscapes are particularly engaging.  Like Dylan songs, the paintings are clearly the work of an acute observer.  Many of these pictures reinforce Dylan’s standing as a non-pareil poet of the everyday, one who detects multiple meanings in the mundane.

Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series 2008-2014 reveals a body of work with a singular vision, expressed in a unique style.  To my mind, the best work in this collection positions Bob Dylan alongside the German Expressionists.

Am I biased?  Certainly: Bob Dylan and visual art are two of my central life interests. To see them combined, as in the best work in Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series 2018-2014, leaves me truly smitten.

Seven years ago, there was very little Bob Dylan art around – the drawings in the 1994 book, earlier sketches in Writings and Drawings and its mid-1980s update, and a modicum of album cover artwork. The world now seems awash with Dylan artwork.

Bob Dylan art

Bob Dylan, Drawn Blank, Random House, 1994

For this, collectors and investors are indebted to Ingrid Mossinger of Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz, who realised that the sketches in Drawn Blank (1994) could be transformed into an impressive, extensive collection of paintings.

And to publishers Washington Green who saw the commercial opportunity presented at the Chemnitz exhibition, and made Bob Dylan art accessible to most citizens of the developed world.

Washington Green have an excellent online catalogue of Bob Dylan The Drawn Blank Series 2008-2014.

All images © Bob Dylan/Washington Green 2014, except Chemnitz catalogue © Prestel 2007, and Drawn Blank © Random House 1994.

Disclaimer: if you are considering buying art from The Drawn Blank Series, please see the disclaimer on the About ROCK ART EDITIONS page.

Rock Art in October: David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Bob Dylan…

Davis Bowie from Aladdin Sane shoot

David Bowie Is exhibition catalogue © The David Bowie Archive

October sees some major rock art shows, with David Bowie, Mick Jagger and Bob Dylan among the featured musicians.

Here are some of the exhibitions I’d like to attend.

DAVID BOWIE: David Bowie Is, originally held at London’s V&A, has just opened at The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, the only US venue on its world tour. The exhibition showcases 400+ objects, mainly from the David Bowie Archive, including handwritten lyrics, photographs, and album cover artwork, as well as costumes and sets. Admission $25, $10 children 7–12, free for the under-6s. 23 Sept-4 Jan 2015. Supported by a desirable catalogue ($35 paperback/$55 hardback).

MICK JAGGER by Richard Hamilton: Richard Hamilton’s magnificent retrospective, featuring mixed media tableaux of a handcuffed Mick Jagger, and originally shown at Tate Modern in London, has now opened at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain. To 13 October. Highly recommended.

BOB DYLAN by Richard Avedon: Richard Avedon People – Perth, Western Australia exhibition of 80 photographs by Richard Avedon, including an evocative shot of Bob Dylan on a cold February 1965 day in Central Park. Art Gallery of WA, Perth, Australia. To 17 Nov.

KEITH RICHARDS, LOU REED, AMY WINEHOUSE in Paris: Sonic is a new exhibition of portraits of musicians by Hedi Slimane, photographer and Yves Saint Laurent designer, at Fondation Pierre Bergé–Yves Saint Laurent, in Paris. It showcases shots of Lou Reed, Keith Richards, Amy Winehouse and Brian Wilson taken in London, New York, and California. 18 Sept-11 Jan 2015. Fondation Pierre Bergé–Yves Saint Laurent

PETER BLAKE: A new permanent mural, Appearing at the Royal Albert Hall, on display near the Cafe Bar, Royal Albert Hall, London. Free. Gathers 400+ performers who have appeared since the Hall opened. Notable rock musicians include Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, Queen, The Rolling Stones, and The Who.

 

You are strongly advised to check details with a venue’s website before travelling – some shows require advance booking and details can change, often at short notice.

Have you seen any of these shows? What did you think of it? Your comments are very welcome. Have I missed an important show?

Visitors and galleries: please tell us of any show we have missed, for inclusion in next month’s round-up. Please send comments/details of shows to ROCK | ART | EDITIONS via “Leave a reply” at the top of this post.

Compilation © ROCK | ART | EDITIONS 2014

Rock Art exhibitions: what to see in September

Beatles White Album exhibition in Liverpool

We Buy White Albums © R Chang/FACT, Liverpool 2014

There’s a wealth of rock art exhibitions around the world this September. Here are some of the exhibitions ROCK | ART | EDITIONS would be attending if it were possible.

BOB DYLAN by Douglas R. Gilbert: Forever Young: Photographs of Bob Dylan by Douglas R. Gilbert, 30+ photos from 1964. South Haven Center for the Arts, 600 Phoenix St., South Haven MI, USA. To 7 Sept. Free.

AMERICAN COOL: 100 “cool Americans”, including musicians Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Miles Davis and Jay-Z, film actors like Lauren Bacall, and writers such as Ernest Hemingway. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian, Washington DC, USA. To 7 September. Free.

THE BEATLES – multiple White Album covers in Liverpool: Rutherford Chang is at FACT in Liverpool to exhibit and add to his enormous collection of copies of The Beatles’ White Album, designed by leading English Pop artist Richard Hamilton. The We Buy White Albums exhibition is set up like a record shop with multiple copies of the single product; and Chang is buying, not selling! FACT and Liverpool International Music Festival, We Buy White Albums, FACT loading bay, Wood Street, Liverpool until 14 September. FACT, Liverpool

MICK JAGGER by Richard Hamilton: Richard Hamilton’s magnificent retrospective, featuring mixed media tableaux of a handcuffed Mick Jagger, and originally shown at Tate Modern in London, has now opened at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain. To 13 October. Highly recommended.

BOB DYLAN by Richard Avedon: Richard Avedon People – Perth, Western Australia exhibition of 80 photographs by Richard Avedon, including an evocative shot of Bob Dylan on a cold February 1965 day in Central Park. Art Gallery of WA, Perth, Australia. To 17 Nov.

KEITH RICHARDS, LOU REED, AMY WINEHOUSE in Paris: Sonic is a new exhibition of portraits of musicians by Hedi Slimane, photographer and Yves Saint Laurent designer, at Fondation Pierre Bergé–Yves Saint Laurent, in Paris. It showcases shots of Lou Reed, Keith Richards, Amy Winehouse and Brian Wilson taken in London, New York, and California. 18 Sept-11 Jan 2015. Fondation Pierre Bergé–Yves Saint Laurent

PETER BLAKE: A new permanent mural, Appearing at the Royal Albert Hall, on display near the Cafe Bar, Royal Albert Hall, London. Free. Gathers 400+ performers who have appeared since the Hall opened. Notable rock musicians include Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, Queen, The Rolling Stones, and The Who.

 

You are strongly advised to check details with a venue’s website before travelling – some shows require advance booking and details can change, often at short notice.

Have you seen any of these shows? What did you think of it? Your comments are very welcome. Have I missed an important show?

Visitors and galleries: please tell us of any show we have missed, for inclusion in next month’s round-up. Please send comments/details of shows to ROCK | ART | EDITIONS via “Leave a reply” at the top of this post.

Compilation © ROCK | ART | EDITIONS Ltd 2014

Rock Art: what to see in July

Early Rolling Stones photograph

Early Rolling Stones by Terry O’Neill, on show at Izzy Gallery, Toronto, Canada, © Terry O’Neill 1963?

There’s a wealth of Rock Art exhibitions running around the world at the moment. Here are some of the most promising.

NEW SHOW

TERRY O’NEILL: The Rolling Stones plus many other 1960s musicians and other celebs on view at Terry O’Neill: The Man Who Shot the Sixties, Izzy Gallery, Yorkville Avenue, Toronto, Canada. 27 June-24 August.

TOP SHOWS

PETER BLAKE: A new permanent mural, Appearing at the Royal Albert Hall, on display near the Cafe Bar, Royal Albert Hall, London. Free. Gathers 400+ performers who have appeared since the Hall opened. Notable rock musicians include Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, Queen, The Rolling Stones, and The Who.

Peter Blake will be best known to many readers of ROCK / ART / EDITIONS for his celebrated artwork on the cover of the Beatles album, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

BOB DYLAN: photographs by Daniel Kramer, Paulucci Space Theatre, Hibbing Community College, Hibbing MN. To 23 August. Free.

PATTI SMITH: a dozen or so photographs in the Robert Mapplethorpe exhibition, Le Grand Palais, Paris. To 13 July.

GREAT BLACK MUSIC: Michael Jackson, Cesaria Evora, Marvin Gaye, Billie Holiday, Fela Anikulapo Kuti, Aretha Franklin, Bob Marley, Myriam Makeba, Oum Kalsoum, among many others. La Cité de la Musique, in NE Paris. To 24 August

RONNIE WOOD of the ROLLING STONES: Ronnie Wood: Art and Music, William Benton Museum of Art in Storrs, University of Connecticut. To 10 August. Free.

AMERICAN COOL: 100 “cool Americans”, including musicians Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Miles Davis and Jay-Z, film actors like Lauren Bacall, and writers such as Ernest Hemingway. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian, Washington DC. To 7 September. Free.

(You are strongly advised to check details with a venue’s website before travelling – some shows require advance booking and details can change, often at short notice)

Have you seen any of these shows? What did you think of it?  Your comments are very welcome.

Have we missed an important show?  Visitors and galleries: please tell us of any show we have missed, for inclusion in next month’s round-up.

Please send comments/details of shows to ROCK / ART / EDITIONS via “Leave a reply” at the top of this post.

Rock Art – what to see in June: Peter Blake, Bob Dylan, Oasis

Rock Art at the Royal Albert Hall, London

Peter Blake with friends in front of Appearing at the Royal Albert Hall by Peter Blake. © Royal Albert Hall 2014. Image by Andy Paradise 2014

There’s a wealth of Rock Art exhibitions running around the world at the moment. Here are some of the most promising.

NEW SHOWS

PETER BLAKE: A new permanent mural, Appearing at the Royal Albert Hall, on display near the Cafe Bar, Royal Albert Hall, London. Free. Gathers 400+ performers who have appeared since the Hall opened. Notable rock musicians include Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, Queen, The Rolling Stones, and The Who.

Peter Blake will be best known to many readers of ROCK / ART / EDITIONS for his celebrated artwork on the cover of the Beatles album, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

OASIS: Definitely Maybe – The Oasis Photographs, by Michael Spencer Jones, is also on show at Royal Albert Hall – Ground Floor Corridor of the Royal Albert Hall, Fri 6 – Sun 29 June. Can be viewed when attending performances at the Hall, and on two free open days, Sat 28 June and Sun 29 June, 10am – 4pm. Entry via Door 12.

BOB DYLAN: photographs by Daniel Kramer, Paulucci Space Theatre, Hibbing Community College, Hibbing MN. To 23 August. Free.

TOP SHOWS

BOB DYLAN: Dylan’s Drawn Blank Series, The Ross Art Group gallery, New York. To 14 June.

PATTI SMITH: a dozen or so photographs in the Robert Mapplethorpe exhibition, Le Grand Palais, Paris. To 13 July.

GREAT BLACK MUSIC: Michael Jackson, Cesaria Evora, Marvin Gaye, Billie Holiday, Fela Anikulapo Kuti, Aretha Franklin, Bob Marley, Myriam Makeba, Oum Kalsoum, among many others. La Cité de la Musique, in NE Paris. To 24 August

RONNIE WOOD of the ROLLING STONES: Ronnie Wood: Art and Music, William Benton Museum of Art in Storrs, University of Connecticut. To 10 August. Free.

AMERICAN COOL: 100 “cool Americans”, including musicians Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Miles Davis and Jay-Z, film actors like Lauren Bacall, and writers such as Ernest Hemingway. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian, Washington DC. To 7 September. Free.

(You are strongly advised to check details with a venue’s website before travelling – some shows require advance booking and details can change, often at short notice)

Have you seen any of these shows? What did you think of it?  Your comments are very welcome.

Have we missed an important show?  Visitors and galleries: please tell us of any show we have missed, for inclusion in next month’s round-up.

Please send comments/details of shows to ROCK / ART / EDITIONS via “Leave a reply” at the top of this post.

Horace Panter art: ex-Specials guitarist builds a fine body of work

Have you come across Horace Panter art? I recently discovered it and was mightily impressed.

Horace Panter art: autobiography of guitarist turned painter

Horace Panter art: autobiography © Pan 2008

After Coventry ska band The Specials disbanded, bass guitarist Horace Panter switched from playing music to teaching art. In the process, he built a formidable portfolio of art.

Although he rejoined The Specials when they re-formed in 2008, the bassist has continued to build an extensive body of work, including some vibrant studies of fellow musicians such as Miles Davis and John Lee Hooker. Horace Panter art has a distinctive style, with echoes of the Pop Art of Peter Blake.

Horace Panter’s art, including some affordable limited editions, is available through several galleries: for example, The White Room, with galleries in English spa towns Leamington and Bath, has a particularly attractive collection.

The ex-Specials’ own website is, of course the best place to explore Horace Panter’s art.