Why all aeroplanes?

In 1979 I cut a paper stencil freehand of an aeroplane. I printed this simple image up shirt sleeves, on collars, cuffs and sweatshirts. Anything that moved got a plane on it. When I multiplied them into squadrons all flying in the same direction I found that the image gave the print a certain power.

Chris Milton painted this picture on me working in my studio in Tabernacle street in 1983. The painting is approx 1.50 X 1.50 and was in an exhibition in 1984 at The National Theatre London. Recently Chris Milton won the David Gluck Memorial Bursary for his striking Singer graphite drawing inspired by a “half remembered” visit to a London fetish club.

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In the composition Chris has brought attention to the planes printed on my woolly tights flying up my legs. The painting was featured in the book European Illustration. The book also featured illustrations by Peter Blake, Gerald Scarfe, Chris Milton, Sato Yamamoto, Catherine Denvir, Ian Pollock, Ronald Searle and Ralph Steadman.

I first printed the rose in 1979 in a silkscreen print which included a photograph I’d taken of the beautiful Clive in a veiled hat. I used the image on various objects including cushions as well as selling it as just a framed print. Then by a fusion of trial and error the two elements of the plane and the rose eventually became one and the cross and planes t-shirt print became part of the 81-82 collection.

From Sue Clowes Bio.

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