The latest content and news from the Barbican. Book tickets at
The latest content and news from the Barbican. Book tickets at

The Voices of Pop

Hearing from the experts and artists of Pop, we take a closer look at some of the key pieces in our Pop Art Design exhibition to discover more about the works, from their historical importance to the unique ways in which they were made.

Studio 65 – Leonardo
A traditional sofa, brought to life by the bold stars and stripes of the American flag, Studio 65’s Leonardo is one of the highlights of Pop Art Design. Illustrating the ways Pop artists experimented with form and with new synthetic materials, the curved Leonardo sofa exudes both the sensual and also the political influences of Pop.

Pop Art Design curator, Catherine Ince, introduces this heroic object of Pop:

Jann Haworth – The Cowboy
Originally made for the artwork of The Beatles’ album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club, co –designed by Jann Haworth and Peter Blake, The Cowboy unfortunately did not make the final selection. Yet with his nonchalant lean and intricately detailed features and clothing, her vision of Americana cuts a striking figure in the Barbican Art Gallery as The Cowboy makes his appearance in Pop Art Design.

We spoke to American Pop artist Jann Haworth about The Cowboy, as she reflects on what he means to her today:

Gaetano Pesce – UP 5 & 6 / La Mamma & Donna
From its voluptuous design and vibrant red to its starring role as Big Brother’s ‘diary room chair’, Gaetano Pesce’s furniture is arguably some of the most instantly recognisable design in Pop. Typical of the innovations taking place in art and design, Pesce adopted a pioneering approach not just to the chair’s design but also to its actual manufacture.

Pop Art Design curator, Catherine Ince describes the unique flatpack packaging of Pesce’s chair:

From curators to the artists themselves, hear more of the voices of Pop by downloading our free Pop Art Design exhibition app:

Pop Art Design is open until Sunday 9 February 2014 in the Barbican Art Gallery.