Yorkshire artist with Harrogate fan base looks back on his role in Swinging London as his new exhibition is launched

An artist with close links to Harrogate who is acclaimed for being a key player in the look of the Swinging Sixties has been looking back to the days of The Beatles as he launches his first exhibition in Yorkshire in years.
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Dudley Edwards, who was co-founder of pioneering Pop Art collective BEV alongside Doug Binder and David Vaughan and painted Paul McCartney’s iconic ‘Magic Piano’, said his latest paintings share much of the aesthetics of his designs in Swinging London.

"My new work still has the same geometric aspects and the bright colours of the era when we would be asked to paint the facade of Lord John’s boutique on Carnaby Street,” said Halifax-born Dudley.

"I still like the surface to be flat with no visual depth.”

British pop art pioneer Dudley Edwards pictured in 2019 at Harrogate's RedHouse Originals gallery where he has exhibited several times over the years. (Picture Gerard Binks)British pop art pioneer Dudley Edwards pictured in 2019 at Harrogate's RedHouse Originals gallery where he has exhibited several times over the years. (Picture Gerard Binks)
British pop art pioneer Dudley Edwards pictured in 2019 at Harrogate's RedHouse Originals gallery where he has exhibited several times over the years. (Picture Gerard Binks)
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Exhibiting for the very first time at Ilkley Manor House, Edwards’ new show, called Beauty, covers a good 30 years of his artistic evolution.

Although still influenced by his original inspirations such as Picasso, Matisse and Degas, his more recent work results mainly from trawling through millions of photographic images online looking for a spark.

Now hitting his eighties, Dudley was a house guest of Paul McCartney’s when The Beatles were recording their classic album Sgt Pepper.

His role at the epicentre of the Pop Art revolution means he is still in demand as a guest speaker or interviewee for articles, books and films about the era that changed the world.

Swinging London - A young Dudley Edwards, left, and Doug Binder of pioneering Pop Art design collective BEV posing with the Cobra car they painted for The Beatles' friend Tara Browne in 1966. (Picture contributed)Swinging London - A young Dudley Edwards, left, and Doug Binder of pioneering Pop Art design collective BEV posing with the Cobra car they painted for The Beatles' friend Tara Browne in 1966. (Picture contributed)
Swinging London - A young Dudley Edwards, left, and Doug Binder of pioneering Pop Art design collective BEV posing with the Cobra car they painted for The Beatles' friend Tara Browne in 1966. (Picture contributed)
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He was even invited to take part in My Generation, a 2017 documentary film in which acting legend Michael Caine examined England's cultural revolution of the 1960s alongside the likes of David Bailey, Joan Collins, Twiggy, and Paul McCartney.

"It was nice meeting some old faces.

"I was interviewed for two hours in a London hotel where the photoshoot for the Rolling Stones’ Beggars Banquet album took place.

"When McCartney came up with When I’m Sixty-Four I thought 64 sounded far away.

"Now both of us are nearly 20 years beyond that age and I don’t see myself as old.”

Dudley Edwards: Beauty runs at Ilkley Manor House until April 28.