Sir Peter Blake, considered the “godfather” of British Pop art has turned 80 years old and to celebrate this momentous achievement, The Macallan has produced a unique, limited edition art piece, The Macallan and Sir Peter Blake celebrate eight decades.
Sir Peter has a long- standing connection with The Macallan, having designed the label which adorned the first 12 bottles of the highly collectable Macallan 1926, bottled back in 1986. For this project he has teamed up with art director, David Holmes, designer of the earliest Macallan advertising campaign and creative force behind the brand’s most recent Royal commemorative limited edition bottlings, celebrating the marriage of William and Kate in 2012 and more recently the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
The Macallan and Sir Peter Blake celebrate eight decades consists of an oak box, divided in to eight sections, each decade having a backdrop and artefact designed, inspired or chosen by Sir Peter Blake, a miniature of The Macallan distilled in that decade (1930 through to 2000’s), with labels designed by Sir Peter and a small book of illustrations and text about Blake’s life.
The wooden box is designed to represent eight decades in the life of Blake and also The Macallan. The artefacts* contained within the incredible box, sourced by art director Stuart Newman following Sir Peter’s guidance, represent the four elements of water, fire, air and earth, as a direct connection to the whisky making process.
Commenting on the project, Sir Peter Blake, said, “This piece is a reflection of my approach to my work, taking inspiration from the last 80 years, be it from my own art collection or my own actual work. This project has brought together an outstanding team who have truly brought this wonderful idea to life. Working with The Macallan has been great fun and this project allowed me to explore different ideas to create something special, unique and highly creative. ”
The eight whiskies contained in the box offer a journey through the character of The Macallan from the 1930s through to the 2000s. The journey begins with a number of extremely rare single malts taken from The Macallan’s prestigious Fine & Rare collection through the decades, to a stunning whisky from 2002. The oldest whisky in the collection is a 1937, then progressing to a 1949; 1952; 1969; 1976; 1989; 1997; 2002.
David Cox, Director of Fine and Rare Whiskies at The Macallan, said; “Working with Sir Peter Blake and David Holmes has been a great pleasure for us at The Macallan. They have brought such flair and creativity to the project, testament to their outstanding skill and inspiration. This wonderful box is a true celebration of both The Macallan and Sir Peter Blake over the past 80 years, a work of art in its own right from one of Britain’s greatest living artists. We’ve selected whiskies which best reflect the character of our single malt through these eight decades. We are confident that it will be eagerly sought after by Macallan collectors and art enthusiasts around the world. ”
With only 250 boxes for sale, this box of treasures is set to achieve high rarity value and collectability. A small number of boxes are available via www.themacallan.com and the remaining are allocated to key markets around the world, with a guide price of £4,500.
Black and white image of distillery workers at The Macallan
Fire bucket – representing water and fire
Dancing tin duck – a replica of one of Sir Peter’s favourite’s from his own collection
Tin damsel fly – still very much alive on Speyside
Small bottle with painting of the Queen Mary, one of the first pieces of art Sir Peter Blake bought as a student in the late forties
Wellington boots – representing an original pair of Tom Thumb boots that Sir Peter has in his collection, and one of his favourites.
She Devil painting on cover of book
CD with cover of Beatles painting by Sir Peter Blake – – including an old advertisement created by DH and a film by Phil Sansom on the making of the Blake @ LXXX box
Teapot and roses painting – adding flowers to the bold and colourful design
Robin painting – to provide some natural life
Gnome fishing (on the Spey!)or with garden spade.
Spey Salmon – representing the fishing on the Macallan’s Easter Elchies Estate
Extract from book – W for Whisky The collage is very typical of SPB’s style
Macallan cask – representing the importance of the oak casks in the making of The Macallan
Porcelain mouse – representing the computer age.
About Sir Peter Blake
Born 25 June 1932, Sir Peter Blake is an English pop artist, best known for his design of the sleeve for the Beatles’ album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. During the late 1950s, Blake became one of the best known British pop artists. His paintings from this time included imagery from advertisements, music hall entertainment, and wrestlers, often including collaged elements. Blake was included in group exhibitions at the Institute of Contemporary Arts and had his first solo exhibition in 1960.