FOURArt | Pop culture icon

07 Sep 2016
2 min read
British artist Simon Claridge teams up with one of the most iconic, and more controversial, magazine brands of the twentieth century, all in the name of art…
Paying homage to Playboy

There’s no denying it; the black silhouette of a bow-tie-wearing rabbit on a white background is globally recognised as the Playboy logo. Established by Hugh Hefner in Chicago in 1953 as a men’s lifestyle magazine, it is still going strong today and has featured many of the world’s most iconic women of the past 60 years on its cover, including Marilyn Monroe—who featured on the very first cover—Pamela Anderson, Stephanie Seymour and Kate Moss.

The covers of Playboy have now sparked a collaboration with British artist Simon Claridge, who has gained international respect for his interpretations of iconic figures on silkscreen, which he uniquely finishes with diamond dust.

Claridge, who sites Andy Warhol as his inspiration, says,”[Warhol] famously created a Playboy cover, cementing the relationship between Playboy and Pop Art [and] paving the way for artists like me.”

The collaboration sees Claridge sprinkle his signature diamond-dusting style over some of the most iconic images produced by Playboy in its 63-year history.

Launching at London’s Playboy Club earlier this year, Claridge selected six images from Playboy’s archive, from the period 1967 to 1982, to feature in the collection. Transforming each iconic image into a signed, limited edition silkscreen print.

“Playboy, to me, represents so many firsts. It’s progressive, revolutionary [and] I cannot emphasise enough the reach and scope of Playboy’s influence.

“I am so proud that my diamond dust collection is to be part of Playboy’s lineage in 20th century culture.”

Claridge’s work is synonymous with celebrating iconic women of the 20th century, such as Bridget Bardot and Twiggy, and the artist has accepted private commissions from Kate Moss, David Coulthard and Rachel Zoe, among others, in the past.

The Playboy collection is available to purchase from Washington Green’s UK network of galleries, Castle Fine Art. Ian Weatherby-Blythe, the managing director of Castle Fine Art, says: “[Claridge’s] selection of images—chosen from over 700 covers dating back to 1953—speaks of his penchant for a primarily seventies aesthetic, although the imagery undoubtedly has a timeless appeal.”

Prices start from £995, and portfolio sets are also available in both silkscreen on paper and silkscreen on canvas.