A dream pairing, really, of gallery and artist — two of our favourites, working together on a bold, bright, fairly glam (and therefore, highly appropriately pitched) poster project.
The brilliant British film by Mike Hodges (also known for Get Carter. What a guy!) has rightly become a cult classic, creating a staple in the Flash Gordon canon that, once seen, is hard to not fall entirely in love with. The costumes, with their excessive use of light-spraying gold; the cast, with a booming Brian Blessed as Prince Vultan; and the music, with Queen at their theatrical-rocking best. Has there been a greater melange of eye-popping over-the-toppedness committed to film?
Peter’s poster does a fantastic job of capturing the sense of theatrical gaudery that the film’s costume department delivered on-set, and there are echos in there of the artwork created in 1980, for the film’s original release, by poster legend Richard Amsel. Crowing from above, larger-than-life, his ring of power ablaze, is Emperor Ming; and below, amid what appears to be an intergalactic nebula, his instantly recognisable vest consumed by it, is Flash himself, sword at the ready, the Saviour of the Universe.
Especial focus in Peter’s work has been given to the film’s heavy use of shining gold. It is found in Ming’s cuffs, in his shoulder armatures, and in his extraordinarily large collar, as well as in the sword that Flash wields. The use of colour in the artwork draws attention to these areas in a wonderful way, and in the variant edition, which is printed on gold foil, the effect is truly dazzling.
It is always a pleasure, printing the work of Peter Diamond. Not only because his artwork makes for an exciting transition to the screenprint medium (every time, without fail), but also because the pre-press job of translating the art always feels like a collaborative exercise, the outcome a shared experience.
Special mention to the team at Vice Press, who seem to be having a fun time, exploring the territory that a Flash Gordon licence provides. This is merely the next edition in what we imagine will be an ongoing series of releases, and we can’t wait to see what pairing they come up with next.
Flash Gordon was screenprinted at the White Duck Editions studio at 24”x36”, and in 6 colours. Regular edition of 250 on premium white cover stock & variant edition of 150 on Mirri matte gold foil.For more on those involved, we highly recommend visiting the world of Peter Diamond’s art, as well as the Vice Press Gallery.