John Penton Davis
Commissioned Artist for “A Decade of The Who"
We are excited to announce this exhibit presenting images on display for the first time ever in the United States featuring an artist's interpretation of early Who songs.
John Penton Davis (1950-2006) was a self taught artist, a fan and a close friend of The Who. He would see The Who play locally in pubs during their earliest years while still billed as ‘The High Numbers’. But later as The Who, John really became a devout fan.
In 1969 when ‘Tommy’ was released, John created artwork inspired by the songs on the new LP. At 19 years old, he had completed about 20 paintings, enough to have a small exhibition in Silchester, England near his home.
Upon seeing these paintings, his friend asked John if another friend could see the exhibit. Then arranged this friend to see it the following week. The ‘friend-of-a-friend was no other than Roger Daltrey! He was impressed how the band was portrayed.
Next Pete Townshend saw the exhibit mentioning the band was publishing a book centered on the first 10 years: 1965-1975. Townshend offered John a commission to design the book based upon his art.
John concentrated on developing the body of work taking around two to three months per painting. Upon completion of each work he would travel to Pete's house and show him each of the newest paintings.
The book A Decade of The Who was released in 1977 with a page featuring John Davis. Like Townshend, John too was a devotee of guru Meher Baba thus an influence in his artwork.
John died at 56 years old in 2006 from an automobile accident. His original artwork was bequest to his dear friend and fellow Who fan Paul Kelly of Southampton, Hampshire, England.
As John would attend The Who Conventions, Paul now continues John’s legacy displaying this rare body of work at the fan gathering as well as across the south coast of England.
Until now, this rare artwork has only been seen in the book. Over half of the artwork in the book was printed as black and white. Now fans can see all the work in full colour.
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Archival 11 x 14 chromogentic colour prints are for sale at: http://www.rockpaperphoto.com