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Rakewell

Second coming – a Stone Roses guitarist turns to painting

9 August 2019

Introducing Rakewell, Apollo’s wandering eye on the art world. Look out for regular posts taking a rakish perspective on art and museum stories

Thirty years on from the release of the Stone Roses’ first album, the band’s founding guitarist John Squire is to present an exhibition of his art at Damien Hirst’s Newport Street Gallery. Titled ‘Disinformation’, the exhibition will consist of a series of recent large-scale oil paintings (not ‘Made of Stone’, then) based on photographs found on the internet or taken by Squire himself.

This is not the musician’s first foray into the visual arts. Over the decades, he has exhibited work drawing on various influences, including geometric abstraction, Pop art and traditional Islamic designs, in a number of gallery shows. He also designed the covers for his two solo albums, the second of which – Marshall’s House (2004) – featured a cycle of songs inspired by (and sharing titles with) paintings by Edward Hopper.

However, Squire’s highest-profile aesthetic efforts came back in the late 1980s, when he produced the paint-splattered images that graced the sleeves of the Stone Roses’ records. Memorable as they were, Squire doesn’t seem to look back on them with particular fondness: ‘they were straight rip-offs of Jackson Pollocks,’ he told the Guardian in 2004.

The Dust That Turns in Sunbeams (2019), John Squire.

The Dust That Turns in Sunbeams Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates; © John Squire

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