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Edited and compiled by Jonathan Hill, this is a brand new,
profusely-illustrated hardback reference book on artist John Hurford who
quickly became one of the real forces behind the British psychedelic art
movement in the Sixties, and who is perhaps best known for the stunning
range of artwork he produced for OZ Magazine, Gandalf's Garden and IT etc.
Featuring for the first time, a retrospective of hundreds of
examples of his paintings, drawings, posters and book illustrations - the
sum of a lifetime's work from 1964 to the present day.
John Hurford's early work (as much of it still is today) was crowded with
flowers, birds and insects - highly detailed observations from the natural
world he saw around him in the Devon countryside where he lived. It was
often coupled with finely drawn Tolkienesque fantasy landscapes, people and
beings; goblin-like creatures were a favourite, as were naked girls. His
psychedelic style of painting and the subjects he chose were extremely
influential - young people (especially those within the emerging art school
culture at the end of the 1960s) instantly related to it, and it sparked
off a trend in itself when it first appeared.
John Hurford should be universally ranked amongst the top UK artists of the
Swinging Sixties. Revered at the time, in the decades that have followed he
has been completely overlooked, and is rarely mentioned even in the more
‘serious’ and in-depth works on British psychedelic art history - modern
researchers and writers invariably focussing only on the work of Martin
McInnerney and the ‘Hapshash twins’ etc. ("the usual suspects" as Hoppy
calls them) and thereby missing out on a major part of the story.
· PAUL CROSS of the website Sweet Floral Albion says that John Hurford is
"one of the real unsung geniuses of the British psychedelic art scene" - a
fact that this book will hopefully change.
· Evening Standard Art Critic BRIAN SEWELL says that the book was "not
nearly as vile as I thought it might be." [18.8.2006]. Now that IS praise!
· World-renown psychedelic poster historian NIGEL MANTZEL says that "John
Hurford is psychedelia's best kept secret" and that "this book is the first
major in-depth work on any British Psychedelic Artist ever to be written".
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
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