On Blood – Pete Doherty makes UK art debut

Posted February 18th, 2012

England, Music, Popculture, Shows

Former Libertines frontman Pete Doherty has reinvented himself as a fine artist and will open his first UK-based art exhibition at a gallery in London next Sunday.

Artwork produced for his solo album Grace/Wastelands, plus 20 brand new canvases, will be displayed at the Cob Gallery in Camden until early March. Doherty refers to his unusual technique of smearing or squirting his blood to produce sparse and linear effects as “arterial splatter”.

Official info:
Blood thrills us. It arouses fear and repulsion. An emblem of love and violence. A symbol of both purity and horror. A universal sign of illness and death. Yet as the saying goes, ‘in blood is life’.

The Cob Gallery and Guts for Garters presents a body of work of by Peter Doherty executed in his own blood. This will mark the closure of Guts for Garters and The Cob Gallery’s previous collaborative show ‘Anatomy’. For more information about Guts for Garters, visit their website at

A London debut exhibition of the artist’s personal collection of ephemera and collectibles, co-curated with the artist, will provide the backdrop to Doherty’s archive and specially created new ‘blood’ paintings.

The show will cast new light on Doherty not only as a practicing artist, but as a collector of oddities. As an additional aspect of the show, objects collected and chosen by Doherty will be used to create a unique Gesamtkunstwerk – a Portrait of the Artist.

Original work and prints exclusive to the gallery and signed in the artist’s blood will be available throughout the exhibition. An online catalogue will be produced specifically for the exhibition and images, the work and installation shots will be available.

Several of the pieces featured are collaborations with Doherty’s circle of famous friends, including the late Amy Winehouse, French actress Charlotte Gainsbourg and the artist Alize Meurisse.

Curiosities collected by Doherty, who admits to being an obsessive hoarder, will also be displayed in lower rooms at the Cob, curated by Doherty himself and another gallery, Guts For Garters, with whom Cob regularly collaborates.

This is the first time Doherty, who is better known as a musician and for his high profile relationship with the model Kate Moss, has exhibited as an artist in this country. In 2008 he showed his work at the Chappe gallery in Paris, where he now lives.

Read a frank and in-depth interview with Doherty in today’s Independent

- Click here to see Pete Doherty’s work in pictures, with commentary from the artist