Lot Details

Clive Barker is considered the most important sculptor of the British Pop Art Movement. Known for his witty chrome and bronze renditions of household objects and pop-culture icons, Barker was one of the few sixties British Pop artists to work primarily with sculpture. Barker’s love affair with highly polished metals started in 1964 with his iconic "Two Palettes for Jim Dine". For over 40 years he has worked in chrome plated bronze, polished aluminium and bronze. As a protégé of the legendary art dealer Robert Fraser, and Erica Brausen of the Hanover Gallery, Barker was at the heart of the British Pop Art Movement in 1960’s swinging London. Over the years, Barker has remained true to the essence of Pop Art and his latest works continue to investigate the fundamentals of both traditional and Modernist sculpture, in particular Marcel Duchamp’s concept of the ready-made.

The work being offered for sale is a whimiscal depiction of the British cartoon charachter Andy Capp which was created by Reg Smythe for the Daily Mirror and Sunday Mirror in 1957.

Andy is a working class figure who never actually works, living in Hartlepool, a harbour town in northeast England. The title of the strip is a pun, a perfect phonetic rendition of that region's pronunciation of the word "handicap", as well as a reference to the main character's trademark flat cloth cap.

Early on, the Andy Capp strip was accused of perpetuating stereotypes about Britain's Northerners, who are seen in other parts of England as chronically unemployed, dividing their time between the living room couch and the neighbourhood pub, with a few hours set aside for fistfights at football games... But Smythe, himself a native of that region, had nothing but affection for his good-for-nothing protagonist, a fact which showed in his work. Since the very beginning, Andy has been immensely popular among the people he supposedly skewers.

The artist's decision to depict Andy Capp reflects the charachter's iconic status in British culture, in much the same way that Mickey Mouse was iconic to the American Pop Art movement.

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The seller has recorded the following condition for this lot:
Notes: Very slight surface wear is evident, totally commensurate with age

Definition Key
Image The central image area, composition, or focal point; the area inside the margins/plate marks.
Margin Areas bordering the central image, outside the plate marks, or the perimeter area.
Edge The farthest edge of the object.
Verso The reverse/back of the object.

Minor An existing condition which generally does not involve risk of loss.
Moderate Noticeable damage, increasing in severity and/or size; should be monitored or corrected by a conservator.
Major Distinct, recognizable damage; the stability of the work is questionable and risk is a factor. Requires the attention of a conservator.
Extreme Advanced and severe damage; work is insecure and at great risk.

  • Pickup Location: United Kingdom
  • Shipping Dimensions: 10 x 3.5 in. (25.4 x 8.89 cm.)
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