Earlier in August, we sent an email alerting our friends, customers and colleagues to BBC4’s POP ART season. The season’s opening programme “Soup Cans & Superstars : how-pop-art-changed-the-world” presented by Alastair Sooke, was as exciting as Mogadon. A toe curling interview with the great James Rosenquist was brought to a welcome end when Rosenquist announced that he was tired. Having spent half the show learning that POP! sprung, without warning, from three or four New York artists, we were then told that it had its roots in the much earlier work of Rauschenberg and Ray Johnson. Sooke then let us into another secret, POP ART started in the U.K. (Gasp! Shock!).
Sooke’s barely concealed agenda (that POP ART was a Left-wing response to capitalism) took us to the Paris Uprising of 1968 when the dull, boring posters were deemed to be Pop Art, only because they were produced using silkscreens. Skirting quickly over Jeff Koons (whose prices did not fit into Sooke’s political viewpoint) we came to Pop Art in China, and the plug for the TATE’s forthcoming WORLD GOES POP exhibition.
A really great opportunity wasted in an ill informed, barely cohesive, waste of the licence fee.