Gerald Laing's beguiling ability to combine newsprint scrutiny with silver screen glamour is now the subject of a retrospective exhibition at London's Fine Art Society
British pop artist and sculptor Gerald Laing garnered huge acclaim over the course of his long career, crystallising the 1960s with more than a grateful nod towards his fellow pop artists. He was unique among his peers for his ability to survey both the British and the American art scenes, and his ability to keep one eye on activities on both sides of the pond resulted in an astutely versatile career. It doesn’t hurt, of course, that having left Central Saint Martins School of Art for New York in the 1960s, he quickly came into contact with the likes of Andy Warhol, Jim Rosenquist and Roy Lichtenstein, gathering up an arsenal of contacts which would propel him into cultural consciousness.
This September, London gallery The Fine Art Society marks out highlights from Laing’s impressive legacy, spanning media from sculpture (both minimalist and representational) and paintings, to prints – including his famous 1962 work Brigitte Bardot, which has come to epitomize the decade in which it was created. It’s his half-tone Hollywood honeys, clad in bikinis and preserved on canvas for all eternity, which have best enchanted us, however – combining newsprint techniques with glossy pin-ups, harking back to days of yore.
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Gerald Laing: A Retrospective runs from September 19 until October 13 at The Fine Art Society, London.