Opening on May 12, the Lever Gallery’s ‘Selected Works’ show will feature a range of Sanders’ projects, from his portraits for The Sunday Times Magazine and Nova created in the 1960s and 70s – alongside posters for films such as Oh What A Lovely War and Lady Sings The Blues – through to his recent commission for the sixth TV series of Mad Men in 2011.
Sanders’ early work was influenced by a new American method known as the ‘bubble and streak’ style, whereby Liquitex acrylic paints were used to achieve a unique effect. As Bryn Havord describes on his website on Sanders’ work (Havord commissioned him to illustrate articles for Woman’s Mirror in the mid-60s), these materials weren’t initially available in the UK but soon became popular with illustrators who would have them sent over from the the US.
Shown below are a couple examples from one of the most interesting projects Sanders was involved in at that time – working as the on-set illustrator for Stanley Kubrick’s classic science-fiction film of 1965. The artist spent months on set recording the production of 2001: A Space Odyssey, providing a unique glimpse into the director’s notoriously closed-off creative process.
More recently, Sanders was commissioned to work on a series of illustration for the US TV series, Mad Men after its creator Matthew Weiner came across the illustrator’s work on some TWA flight menus from the 1970s. Sanders was asked to create a poster and the DVD packaging for the series campaign.
The Lever Gallery exhibition will focus on four specific areas of Sanders’ archive – Bubble and Streak: 1960s Illustration; Bubble and Streak: Revisited (Mad Men); 2001: A Space Odyssey; and NOVA Portraits.