We are huge fans of the work of Sheffield based artist Pete McKee. We included an original painting and two of Pete’s screenprints in our 2010 Temple of Wax exhibition, and the response was phenomenal. So it is with a huge dollop of pleasure that we are able to announce that we will be hosting Pete’s first major London exhibition in our Piccadilly Arcade space starting on Saturday 10 September 2011. Stick it in your diary.  

The title of the exhibition is "Great Moments in Popular Music". The show is a wry look at the events in rock ’n’ roll that shaped our lives and inspired people to form bands and make history. As well as retelling tales of vinyl gods and goddesses, the exhibition also takes a look at our own fandom – the clothes, the hairstyles – all done with the wit and reverence that we’ve come to expect from Pete McKee.

You can see an extract from one of the new paintings in the exhibition poster reproduced here. "The Beatles get a haircut"  captures the moment , as imagined by Pete, when the Beatles first acquired their moptops, and, as Pete puts it, changed from Rockers to Mockers.

But if this isn’t until September, why are we telling you about it now?  There is a good reason, and here it is:

Behind the scenes: your own backstage pass

To make this even more special, we are doing something we have never done before – we’re going behind the scenes on all the planning that goes into this exhibition. We want to give you a backstage pass – a real insight into what goes into putting together a show like this.  How are we going to do it?  To kick things off, Pete has set up a new blog site specially for the purpose: www.greatmomentsinmusic.co.uk.

As Pete explains: "As part of this exhibition I want to do something unique. I want to take people on a journey by documenting the whole creative process of producing an exhibition – from the original concept for the exhibition to the final painting, and everything in between. This will be done as part of a regular blog update featuring sketches, musings and video clips."

The blog is live right now, and there are already some posts on there. Pete will be adding new posts on a regular basis. If you go to the blog site you can sign up to receive details of new blog posts automatically. The blog a great insight into how projects like this come together, turning from idea into tangible reality. We hope you find it interesting.

Opening night

If you are in the market for a McKee original painting, and would like to come along and get an early opportunity to make a purchase, please get in touch with Jacqueline at the gallery and she will take your details.  We are having a private view party in London on Thursday 8 September 2011, and that will be the earliest opportunity to secure a painting. If the reaction to the pieces in our Christmas 2010 exhibition is anything to go by, Pete’s originals are going to be extremely popular.

We look forward to updating you with further developments on this fabulous exhibition.