Paul McCartney by Simon PritchardRebel Yell: Bad Boys of Rock ‘N’ Roll

Simon Pritchard
Liverpool Academy of Arts, 36 Seel Street
8th - 18th November 2005, Mon-Fri (12pm-4pm)

Reviewed by Kenn Taylor

Though he is a regular supplier of artwork to Beatles-themed exhibitions, this is Norwich based Simon Pritchard’s first solo show in Liverpool. The exhibition is based around a series of large pictures on canvas, surrounded by visual representations of their music, style and the period when they were at their peak. It covers artists from the full spectrum of rock, jazz, pop history - from Billie Holiday to David Bowie - concentrating on those seen as rebels in one way or another.

Stand-out pieces for me included ‘Chasin’ the Devil’ - showing Gene Vincent playing in the seedy clubs of Hamburg in the 1950s surrounded by images of gaudy neon signs; ‘Taking the Pistols’ - depicting the Sex Pistols in a collage of the punk style of the time, zips, netting, and cut out newspaper headlines, and ‘Electric Shock Treatment’ - a detailed picture of Bob Dylan surrounded by some of the comments directed towards him when he shocked the folk establishment by turning to an electric guitar and backing band.

Another poignant image is ‘Strange Fruit’ showing Billie Holiday painted in black on white. She is surrounded by the corpses of black people hung from trees by white extremists in the troubled America of the thirties, which was the theme of that famous song.

For those not able to afford a full canvas, Simon also applies his work to hand-painted silk ties and hand-made greetings cards.
It is a collection of detailed and evocative portraits that well captures some of the most famous and infamous stars of rock music of the last fifty years.

For more information about Simon and his work email:

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