What do The Beatles mean to artists today? Here’s how 30 illustrators see the band
RoomFifty co-founder and Beatles super fan Leon Edler curates and presents Beatles-themed artworks from Stan Chow and Wei Hsuan Chen to Paul Blow.
- Liz Gorny
- 3 May 2023
Leon Edler thinks that The Beatles have always been a great subject for art. The RoomFifty co-founder explains: “You think about album covers by Klaus Voorman, Peter Blake, Richard Hamilton, Heinz Edelman – The Beatles are as inspiring to artists as they are to musicians.” A collection of over 30 new Beatles artworks attempts to show this evergreen quality of the band’s music, while posing another question: how do you offer a fresh take on the most well-known band ever?
The resulting artworks cover broad ground from a fandom perspective, forming a new collection of limited edition prints, T-shirts, posters and postcards called A Soap Impression. Wei Hsuan Chen, for example, presents a unique take on Abbey Road, subbing band members for cats and dogs. Other takes include Greg Clarke’s Liverpool FC-Beatles mashup, inspired by a scene in Richard Lester’s comedy A Hard Day’s Night (1964) showing the band running to evade fans.
Leon Edler digs deeper into the Beatles story still to spotlight Mal Evans, road manager and personal assistant. Elsewhere, Paul Blow sketches a profile shot of the Fab Four and Stan Chow contributes a print inspired by Yellow Submarine – one of his children’s favourite films. There’s also Colin King’s famous 1970 Sunday Times cover included in the collection, available as a fine art print for the first time.
Though RoomFifty attempts to show the evergreen appeal of The Beatles, Leon Edler also believes that now is a particularly pertinent time to release the prints. “At a time when many of us don't feel very proud to be British, the Beatles feel like a tonic to all the evil and insularity.” A Soap Impression will be available online at RoomFifty from Thursday 11 May. Peruse a selection of the prints, along with stories from the artist, below.
GalleryRoomFifty: A Soap Impression
Lorenzo Montatore: The Beatles 1967 (Copyright © Lorenzo Montatore)
“At the age of 10, The Beatles were just an old band of pop music I’ve had seen on television; four guys surrounded by crazy screaming fans. One day I discovered a cassette tape in my sister’s room, with an image of them very dissimilar: They had odd moustaches and dressed in strange patterned colourful clothes. I played the tape and the Mellotron started to sound. Ten seconds later they became my favourite band.”
About the Author
Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. After graduating in Film from The University of Bristol, they worked freelance, writing for independent publications such as Little White Lies, INDIE magazine and design studio Evermade.