EXHIBITION : CURRENT
SENSIBILITY AND WONDER
JOHN DOVE & MOLLY WHITE
In search of the origin of Street fashion and Punk.
The first solo exhibition in Japan by John Dove and Molly White, artists beloved by Sid Vicious, David Bowie and Iggy Pop.
DIESEL ART GALLERY will hold an exhibition of works by John Dove and Molly White, the essential artists in the history of the Punk movement. The exhibition starts Friday, August 25th and will run until Thursday, November 9th.
This exhibition features the origin of street fashion and punk movement while reflecting the works of John Dove and Molly White. The T-shirt has been a clothing staple in Street fashion for quite a while, and its history dates back to 1968 when John Dove and Molly White produced fully printed T-shirts under the label “WONDER WORKSHOP” at their atelier in London. The pair used the same silkscreen techniques for making prints to forge their work of art; they applied their printing skills and uniquely developed inks for textiles to make prints on T-shirts for people to wear on the street with an affordable price instead of making small editions on paper or canvas. Their T-shirts allowed the images, which used to exist only on canvas or posters for a limited number of people reach a global audience.
“The T-shirt is a socialist revolution born out of a product of the capitalist modern world. The T-shirt belongs to everyone – part of a universal language – more personal than a Pop poster, more poignant than a song…”
John Dove and Molly White 2011
Dove and White set up a studio at Chippenham House, a large derelict factory in Paddington, in where artists including poets, writers, painters, filmmakers and designers had performed experimental projects. Around the same time in the late 1960s when musicians such as The Stooges led by Iggy Pop and Lou Reed’s Velvet Underground became popular in New York, radical cultures on both sides of the Atlantic had gradually interacted with each other and lit the fuse that would ignite the PUNK MOVEMENT.
From 1970 to 1972, there was a boutique called “Paradise Garage” on 430 Kings Road, where Vivienne Westwood’s “Worlds End” stands today. It was also the owner, Trevor Myles’ based social situation, where Dove and White, Vivienne Westwood, Malcolm McLaren and Sid Vicious used to gather. Dove and White’s silkscreened T-shirts with leopard and tiger prints that expressed an anti-fur message were sold at the shop, and those prints had attracted many contemporary artists of the era. After mixing all sorts of ideas from Pop Art, Dada, Surrealism to Rock ‘n Roll, Dove and White successfully created art through T-shirts with which made it possible for people to react immediately to what’s going on in the society and use it as a way of expression. Their work had become a source of ideas for Street fashion in the 70’s and ultimately the origin of PUNK FASHION. Dove and White work actively today, with their strong computer skills, to continue making prints supported by their elaborate drawings and techniques. In the last fifty years of their artistic activities, there’s a consistent theme; a rebellious spirit and humour towards the status quo.
This exhibition features John Dove and Molly White’s artworks while reflecting on past events and people that have walked in the same era with the two. Through screen printings, collage and sculpture, the show traces modern art and fashion techniques born in the 60’s and 70’s. It also follows the origin of ideas that have become commonplace today, along with a sense of moment and a sense of wonder.
Title : SENSIBILITY AND WONDER
Artists : John Dove & Molly White
Date : August 25 ‒ November 9, 2017
Venue : DIESEL ART GALLERY (inside Diesel Shibuya)
Website : diesel.co.jp/art
Address : Cocoti B1F, 1-23-16, Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
TEL : 03-6427-5955
Hours : 11:30am to 9pm
Entrance fee : Free
Closed : No scheduled holidays
Curator : YUSUKE KOISHI(KLEINSTEIN CO., LTD.)
Supported : SHARP / TRNK
Sponsor : NOVESTA JAPAN OFFICE / NOAVENUE
Signing will be held on Saturday, August 26, from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. at DIESEL ART GALLERY.
CURATOR : YUSUKE KOISHI (KLEINSTEIN CO., LTD.)
Yusuke Koishi is the founder of KLEINSTEIN CO., LTD. As a creative planner, a designer and a consultant, he’s produced and designed various projects in the fashion industry both in Japan and abroad. He’s worked on collaborations and curated wide-ranged projects that connect contemporary art and fashion, also has been engaged in criticism and writing. While working at Comme des Garçons, he was involved with a number of projects including “the Biotopological Scale-Juggling Escalator” for Dover Street Market New York, realized by Reversible Destiny Foundation, founded by the artists Shusaku Arakawa and Madeline Gins. In collaboration with John Dove and Molly White, he’s worked on reproducing “Iggy Pop Jacket” in 2013 with Paul Stolper Gallery in London as well as “Strawberry Jacket” that Paul McCartney wore in 1973.
JOHN DOVE & MOLLY WHITE
An artist John Dove from Norwich (1943-) and a textile designer Molly White (1944-) formed an artistic duo in London, 1964. They are known for influencing Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren who are considered to be the exponents of the PUNK MOVEMENT. The pair produced fully printed T-shirts and jackets under the label “WONDER WORKSHOP” in the 60’s. Their products were sold at boutiques such as “Paradise Garage” in London where “Worlds End” stands today and “Ians” in New York. The graphic T-shirt had earned recognition as a fashion item through their productions and became popular in London and abroad. In 1976 they opened a shop “KITSCH-22” and launched their own cult label “MODZART”. Various artists and musicians that symbolize the 70’s loved their T-shirts; Iggy Pop, Marc Bolan, Mick Jagger, Lou Reed, Sid Vicious and Paul McCartney enjoyed wearing the T-shirts and jackets for their concerts and in their private time. Dove and White’s works have been included in many museum shows including The Victoria and Albert Museum in the U.K, TextielMuseum in Tilburg, Netherlands and many other museums and galleries around the world. After Paul Stolper Gallery in London became their main gallery in 2009, Dove and White have continued to present a body of works, which comprised not only their drawings and collage, but also screen-prints on hand-made rag paper made from recycled T-shirts with original artworks with which they used to print T-shirts in the 60’s and 70’s. Many of contemporary artists in London including Damien Hirst are collectors of their artworks. Dove and White have also reproduced fashion items created in the past. In collaboration with Lewis Leathers, the iconic leopard head jacket worn by Iggy Pop for the back cover of 1973’s Raw Power had been re-editioned and was on display at Trading Museum Comme des Garçons in 2013. Additionally, they’ve worked with the curator Yusuke Koishi for NOAVENUE project in 2016, to reprint the Strawberry Jacket that Paul McCartney wore in 1973.
TILBURG, NETHERLAND, “POP ART FABRIC, Warhol to Westwood” TextielMuseum Tilburg, 2016
LONDON, U.K Paul Stolper Gallery “Group Show” with Damien Hirst, Peter Saville, and Sir Peter Blake, 2015
LONDON, U.K, London Art Fair Stand 44 with Paul Stolper Gallery, 2015
ABU DHABI, UAE Modern art contemporary Abu Dhabi Show represented by Paul Stolper Gallery, 2014
NEWYORK, USA, IFPDA Print Fair. NewYork Edition represented by Paul Stolper Gallery, 2014
HONGKONG “IGGY POP’S JACKET”JOHN DOVE and MOLLY WHITE at COMME des GARÇONS HONGKONG, 2014
LONDON,U.K, London Art Fair Stand 44 with Paul Stolper Gallery, 2014
NEWYORK, USA, IFPDA Print Fair. NewYork Edition represented by Paul Stolper Gallery. Park Avenue Armony, 2013
LONDON, U.K Multipled Paul Stolper 6 Group show, Christie’s South Kensington, 2013
TOKYO, JAPAN / PARIS, FRANCE “IGGY POP’S JACKET” JOHN DOVE and MOLLY WHITE at COMME des GARÇONS TRADING MUSEUM, 2013
FRANKHURT, GERMANY, GLAM – The performance of style, JOHN DOVE and MOLLY WHITE, Schirn Kunsthalle Frankhurt, 2013
PARIS, FRANCE, WORN LEATHERETTE At Colette, Paris. JOHN DOVE and MOLLY WHITE, 2013
LONDON, U.K David Bowie Is V&A MUSEUM London, 2013
LIVERPOOL, U.K, GLAM – The performance of style, JOHN DOVE and MOLLY WHITE, TATE Liverpool, 2012
LONDON, U.K, Christie’s Pop Culture Auction JOHN DOVE and MOLLY WHITE, 2012
LOS ANGELES, USA, LA Art Show, Paul Stolper Gallery, LOS ANGELES CONVENTION CENTRE, 2012
KENT, UK Two Faced Fame STUDIO 3 KENT UNIVERSITY 2013
LONDON “London Print Fair” Paul Stolper Gallery ROYAL ACADEMY London 2013
LONDON, UK ” BOWIE IS “V&A MUSEUM LONDON 2013
TOKYO, JAPAN Iggy Pop Jacket 40th Anniverary of RAW POWER COMME DE GARCOMS TRADING MUSEUM TOKYO 2013
NEW YORK, USA ifpda Print-fair, Park Avenue, New York. – FACE prints 2012
LONDON, UK JOHN DOVE AND MOLLY WHITE “FACE TO FACE”. Paul Stolper Gallery LONDON. 2012
LONDON, UK ” MULTIPLIED” Art Fair Christie’ s London. 2012
LONDON, UK “POP DESIGN CULTURE FASHION”. Pop Art textiles at London’s Textile and Fashion Museum. 2012
LONDON, UK CHRISTIE’S “POP CULTURE AUCTION”, LONDON 2012
NEW YORK, USA IFPDA Print Fair”. Paul Stolper Gallery PARK AVENUE ARMOURY New York 2011
LONDON, UK “Editions II” group exhibition PAUL STOLPER GALLERY London 2011
WOKING UK, “Snap, Crackle & Pop” group exhibition LIGHTBOX GALLERY Woking 2011
LONDON. UK “London Print Fair” Paul Stolper Gallery ROYAL ACADEMY London 2011
PRESTON, UK. ” Revolutionary Fabrics” group exhibition HARRIS MUSEUM & ART GALLERY Preston 2010
MIAMI USA “Scope Art Fair” Paul Stolper Gallery 3055 North Miami Avenue Miami 2010
NEW YORK USA ” IFPDA Print Fair” Paul Stolper Gallery PARK AVENUE ARMOURY New York 2010
LONDON, UK. “London Print Fair” Paul Stolper Gallery ROYAL ACADEMY London 2010
HULL, UK ” Revolutionary Fabrics” group exhibition FERENS ART GALLERY Hull 2010
LONDON UK “Multiplied” Paul Stolper Gallery CHRISTIES S. Kensington London 2010
KINGS LYNN UK ” Revolutionary Fabrics” group exhibition KING LYNN ARTS CENTRE Kings Lynn 2010
LONDON UK “The Term Reality” group exhibition PAUL STOLPER GALLERY London 2010
ULSTEINVIC, NORWAY “Go with The Flo” group exhibition GALLERI HUGO OPDAL Ulsteinvic, Norway 2010
BASLE SWITZAERLAND, “Scope” Paul Stolper Gallery CONTEMPORARY ART SHOW Basle 2010
LONDON, UK “London Print Fair” Paul Stolper Gallery ROYAL ACADEMY London 2010
LONDON, UK “Mutate Britain” group exhibition CORDY HOUSE London 2009
LONDON UK “F-Art Prints Show” Duo – show AMUTI GALLERY London 2008
LONDON UK “Paradise Garage Massacre” Duo – show AQUARIUM GALLERY London 2008
John Dove & Molly White Special Interview for DIESEL ART GALLERY Exhibition “SENSIBILITY AND WONDER”
— Please can you explain about your activity. In a few words.
We’re Pop Artists who work every day to create new works and new directions – making images and objects that can navigate the rugged landscape of the art-world, traverse the global media and gatecrash the world of fashion. We are said to be pioneers of a convergence culture where all the arts are beginning to overlap and merge. This could be the future – the final destination of our enchanted serendipity.
— What is the meaning of“SENSIBILITY AND WONDER” title to you, and its concept. Tell us about the story.
SENSIBILITY is the human presence in our approach to the work. WONDER is where the works can have a surprising outcome. Yusuke Koishi, the curator of this exhibition at the DIESEL ART GALLERY in Tokyo, told us he would like to have a title for the show that included the word WONDER as this would relate to our early beginnings in the 60’s and our formation of our first label, WONDER WORKSHOP. (In the 60’s we decided on this title at a time when the diversity of our works was in Painting, Sculpture, Textile printing, Printmaking and Fashion so the word WORKSHOP would encompass these various directions).
— How do you share the role of creation between two of you during the process of making artworks. Is there any of clear distinction?
We each have a different strategy to how we would start up an idea. One of us has a more objective outlook where the work can follow a well-defined course and the other has a more intuitive line of action. These different attitudes sometimes clash but often generate a rhythm in the work that allows us to reach our final destination in constant flow.
— What do you think about the current situation that the most of ideas originated by yourself, such as animal print and screen print to T-shirts are now in trends and still being used?
We think this is typical of those works that have reached the final destination. Especially our most successful idea in 1969; was making T-shirts with black cloth and inventing inks to screenprint them. This was the first time in the world. We also invented printed denim jeans. *Note : The very first idea of “printing on clothing” was released by John Dove and Molly White in 1968. wonderworkshop.co.uk
— How did you shift your activity from fashion to art? Why?
In the mid-60’s we moved from Art to Fashion and by 1969 had moved Fashion into Art after the release of “Painless Tattoo”. The preoccupation of production in a global Fashion context is time-consuming and exhausting. In the 21st Century we decided to return to the Art studio. When we met with Paul Stolper in 2009 and he invited us to join his gallery rostra, we had found the perfect gallery for our work. Paul has a beautiful gallery in a magnificent location and is the most important gallery for prints in the UK. He also ventures into multiple artworks, a direction we have been most interested in returning to.
— What do you remember about the time of 60s-70s, during the period of Iggy Pop, David Bowie and Sid Vicious, icons of glam and punk movement ?
From 1968-78 was the most prolific time in our studio where the outside world merged with the creative world we lived and worked in. Music in the UK and USA was moving away from Beatlemania and back to Rock’N’Roll roots. Reggae and Soul music was changing too. Screen-printed T-shirts and other garments projected the images of our drawings, photographs and screen-printing onto the body. Our task in hand was to make those images flattering on the body. We guessed this was basically the function of the Fashion designer. “Wild Thing, You make my heart sing – you make everything groovy”.
— What is the most important artwork you made in your career ? What is the work that reminds you of something – a very strong impression ?
The most important artwork in our career is the piece of sculpture we are making now. One of the most popular works from the past is the FACE collection from 1976 – the way we cropped and printed the images were more important as works of art. The printed T-shirt came a close second. Prior to that, it was the early printed textiles (“Centrum”) as drapes, sculptures as multiples (“Flying Ducks”), the huge food sculptures (“Giant Jello”) and the “Liberty Souvenir” sculpture for Mr Freedom. There was an illustration in NOVA magazine, where John had been commissioned to draw a celebration of Marlon Brando’s donation of his entire movie earnings to UNICEF. The image was the first time John had used the concept of gigantism in a drawing and had used collage techniques. Also the first time he had been able to experiment with the portrait of a celebrity. Note : “Mr Freedom” was the very first store that introduced Pop and Street Fashion in 60s, located at 430 Kings Road, where Vivienne Westwood’s “Worlds End” stays now.
— What is your inspiration source ? (A few words)
— Please tell us the name of artists, movies, musics(bands or etc) you got influence from ?.
The paintings of Edvard Munch, The paintings by Robert Delauney. The collages, photographs and sculptures of the Dadaists. The paintings by Jackson Pollock. The prints, photographs and sculptures of Andy Warhol, The prints, drawings, collages, combines and sculptures of Robert Rauschenberg, The prints, books and paintings by Ed Ruscha, The drawings and sculptures by Colin Self. The prints and sculptures of Damien Hirst. The paintings and sculptures by Jeff Koons. The prints, photographs and paintings by Richard Prince, The prints and paintings by Richard Hamilton. A book by Dick Jewell called “Found Photos”, The movie “8 1/2″ by Federico Fellini. The movie “Blade Runner” by Ridley Scott, etc, etc, etc. All the music of the 20th Century from the Delta Blues artists of the 40’s and 50’s to Rock’N’Roll of the 50’s to UK Beat and Garage Punk of the 60’s to Punk Rock of the 70’s to Electro of the 80’s to Electronic Disco of the 90’s to the Pop genres of the 21st Century. Now we like “Christine and the Queens”. This week we returned to the old songs by Tracy Chapman like “All That You Have is Your Soul”
— What do you do in holidays ?
Fly to TOBAGO, swim and walk in the sun in Englishman’s Bay and listen to Pan music at Buccoo Beach. Liming with the locals, drinking Carib beer, listening to Reggae at The Sunshine Cafe and going to Sunday School on Sunday evening.
— How was your trip to Japan this time ?
Our trip to Japan in August was wonderful. We thank Yusuke Koishi and Miki Koishi at KLEINSTEIN and a special thanks to the team at DIESEL for making our Tokyo trip so enjoyable and uplifting. Everyone had worked hard to make the exhibition a success and it was a great surprise that our work was so well received with those record attendances.
–How was your autograph session with your fans and talking visitors?
Of course, meeting fans we never knew we had, was delightful and we were happy to oblige everyone with their signatory and photo requests. The signing day was most enjoyable – always the greatest in meeting the people!
–Tell us about your up-coming project or idea.
We have several project ideas that we hope to take forward next year (there are 22 projects in the sketchbook). The most likely is an exhibition in London of the recent painted neons and the Big T sculptures (we hope to make a further 12 pieces by next year). We’ve also been in discussion with friends and journalists about the idea of holding a small exhibition of our anti-nuclear drawings, collages and prints in japan since this area of work has become more prominent given the current developments in the political arena.
–Please tell some messages for visitors of this exhibition ?
We hope the visitors to our exhibition will be enthralled, entertained and inspired by our works.