viernes, 19 de julio de 2013

'Imagine' the artist: Lennon was more than a musician

John Lennon's place in the annals of rock ‘n' roll history is well documented. As one of the Beatles, the Liverpool, England, native achieved international fame while creating some of the most celebrated music of the 20th century.
The Beatles' legacy continues to resonate more than 50 years after the group formed, and Lennon's solo anthem, “Imagine,” has become a universal symbol of hope that is played annually in New York's Times Square upon the arrival of a new year.
Music, however, represents only part of Lennon's creative output.
What many people don't know is that Lennon was also an avid visual artist who studied at the Liverpool Art Institute from 1957-60 and later penned and illustrated three books: “In His Own Write,” “A Spaniard in the Works” and “Skywriting by the Word of Mouth.”
A traveling exhibit of Lennon's artwork will be on display Friday through Sunday at Aloft Asheville Downtown, 51 Biltmore Ave. in Asheville, N.C.
Attendees “are going to be in shock because John was really a good artist, (which is something) nobody expects him to be because he was so famous as a musician,” Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono, said. “He had this incredible sense of humor, which is in his artwork more than in his music.”
As early as 1968, when the Beatles were still together, Lennon began moving toward a return to visual art. He was primarily interested in drawing, and he favored the creative loose sketch, working in pen and ink.
In 1969, as a wedding gift for Ono, Lennon drew the “Bag One Portfolio,” a chronicle of their wedding ceremony, honeymoon and their plea for world peace, the Bed-In.
But as impressive as Lennon's sketches are, his skill as an illustrator was often overshadowed by his musical fame. During his lifetime, Lennon struggled to get his art properly exhibited.
Although “Bag One” opened at the London Art Gallery in 1970, the show was quickly closed down by Scotland Yard, which confiscated Lennon's erotic sketches from the series.
By Dan Armonaitis -

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