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Painter: Sir Peter Blake, (25 June 1932).
British painter, a leading exponent of Pop art, his use of imagery from comics, pin-up magazines, consumer goods and advertisements captures the flavour of the times in a manner that now evokes nostalgia for the 'swinging sixties'. He is, perhaps, best known among the general public for his design of the sleeve for The Beatles' album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.
Blake studied at the Gravesend School of Art, and then the Royal College of Art from 1953 to 1956 following his time in the national service, where his contemporaries included Bridget Riley and Frank Auerbach. He graduated in 1956 and returned there to teach from 1964 to 1976. His early work is dominated by two major subjects: fantastic scenes from the world of the circus and naturalistic paintings with autobiographic elements. The imitation of the popular image world of event posters, which Blake combined with portraits, was typical of his work.