Jamie Reid, the man who cut-and-pasted 1960’s imagery into the Punk movement of the late 70’s, the man responsible for the Sex Pistols legendary ‘Never Mind the Bollocks’ artwork and the man that put the safety pin through Her Majesty’s lower lip has ceased printing his limited editions until further notice. This dramatic step could mean Reid prints are no more or it could just be a well executed publicity stunt, either way the collectable just got even more so.
In our London gallery we have available a great selection of Reid’s limited editions but two of the most notable are his signed ‘Swastika Eyes’ and long-time sold out print ‘Peace is Tough’. ‘Swastika Eyes’ features the original design Reid did when he took the Cecil Beaton portrait of the Queen, tore out her eyes and mouth, put a safety pin through her lips and stuck swastikas in her eyes. This design was first submitted to A&M for the cover of the Sex Pistol’s God Save the Queen 7 and was subsequently banned leading, eventually, to it being revised. One thing remained and that was the cemented belief that Reid was the forerunner of anarchistic, situationist art. ‘Swastika Eyes’ forms an edition of 750, is signed by Reid in pencil and is printed on recycled card.
‘Peace is Tough’ is another of Reid’s most memorable images. The enhanced photograph of John Wayne sporting red lipstick whilst resting on the side of a bath was initially produced as the cover of a 1994 book on punk music history by author Greil Marcus. The lipstick’s prominence in the piece was apparently the artist's reference to another of Greil's books – ‘Lipstick Traces: A Secret History of the Twentieth Century’. The image and more importantly the title ‘Peace is Tough’ went on to become the image and name for his global retrospective tours that began in 1997. Peace is Tough is a limited edition of 100 and is signed and numbered by Reid in black pen.
Reid’s work has always involved a fusion of the political, the spiritual, and a culture in distress, very often blurring the boundaries between art, design and critical response. His work can be seen, not just as pieces of design, but as part of an assault on culture. When Reid’s designs emerged it was possibly the last time that art was truly shocking to the establishment whilst having a genuine radical effect on a whole generation including that now pioneered by Banksy.
If you are interested in these pieces and would like to know further information or to enquire about other works we might have in the gallery call +44 (0)20 7240 7909 or email firstname.lastname@example.org