McKee launches pop-up galleries in more UK cities

He is one of Sheffield’s best loved and most distinctive artists, and soon even more people outside his home city will get to appreciate his work.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 02 April, 2019, 05:00

Pete McKee, whose inimitable style and quirky brand of humour have earned him legions of fans, is opening pop-up galleries in three cities where he has never presented work before.

A mixture of classic creations and new ones will go on display in Brighton, Birmingham and Nottingham, with each exhibition individually curated to best reflect the city in question.

Pete McKee

The tour coincides with the release of his book, Council Skies, which brings together 15 years of work, from his early sketches to pieces from his latest exhibitions.

The book features a foreword from award-winning social affairs writer and author of Austerity Bites: A journey to the sharp end of cuts in the UK, Mary O'Hara, and an introduction from Dr Susan McPherson, lecturer in sociology at Sheffield Hallam University. It will be released on June 14.

The pop-up galleries will be in Brighton from June 14-18, Birmingham from July 4-7 and Nottingham from July 24-27.

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A poster for Sheffield artist Pete McKee's pop-up gallery in Brighton

Asked why he chose those cities, the artist, who has worked with some of the biggest names in music and fashion, said: “Anyone who has flirted with the concept of modernism as I did as a teenager in the late 70s, can’t help but fall in love with Brighton and the role it played in our cultural imagination. When you walk down the sea front you get a sense of the history that it holds and its representation in cult films like Quadrophenia. Brighton is home to some amazing artists and art institutions too so I can't wait to bring my work there.”

“Birmingham and its people are born of hard graft and pride. Its foundations are built on industry and revolution, much like my home town. It has been exciting seeing the city evolve and change over the years with more and more creative spaces popping up. I particularly love the street art dotted about the city.”

“I love visiting Nottingham, the home to my favourite comic book shop, Page 45, and my favourite record shop, Rough Trade. In my youth ,a trip to Nottingham was essential to pick up some vintage clobber from the great retro shops. In short, Nottingham is a fantastic place to shop.”

The pop-ups follow Mr McKee’s biggest show to date, This Class Works, which attracted more than 10,000 visitors to the former spring factory in Kelham Island where it was staged last year.