Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite
October 11, 2012 6:05 AM   Subscribe

Lennon's Poster — A short film follows the recreation of the Pablo Fanque circus poster [previously] that inspired John Lennon to write 'Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite' for the Beatles album 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band'. Using the traditional methods of wood engraving and letterpress printing, a team of experts brings Lennon's poster to life.
posted by netbros (12 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I kind of liked this, but it seems more porny than informational. "Look, we are using old-timey stuff!" without any explanation of how anything works or even putting it into context.
posted by DU at 6:44 AM on October 11, 2012

I don't know, maybe it's because I've already taken coursework on how this stuff does work, but I most certainly squeed for pretty much the whole thing. Now all I can think is "WANT!!"
posted by Mooseli at 6:57 AM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]

I found it interesting, but I was hoping for a bit more detail as well...more as a Beatles fan, and a fan of that particular song, than as a fan of antique print-making.
posted by NationalKato at 7:15 AM on October 11, 2012

Loved the video (I'm a sucker for letterpress anyway) and it begs the question, where is the poster today? Does Yoko still have it lovingly framed and hanging up somewhere in her Dakota flat? I would think she might be willing to have a clear photo taken of it so that they can truly reproduce it.

I wish the repro poster weren't so darned expensive, I'd buy one in a heart beat!
posted by kuppajava at 7:33 AM on October 11, 2012

I wonder what the engraver watches on the telly while working with no camera on him. If he's anything like me, it's MASH reruns and the occasional soccer match.
posted by Brocktoon at 7:46 AM on October 11, 2012

without any explanation of how anything works

It's hard to see what needs explaining, really. The raised bits get ink on them and that ink gets pressed onto the paper. What more do we need to know? It's a pretty lo-tech--though high-skill--area.
posted by yoink at 8:56 AM on October 11, 2012

Do want.

When I was a young kid in the early 80s, rock and roll memorabilia was just turning into something that got auctioned at Sotheby's and the big auction houses. My dad used to take me to the auctions (we lived in London) although we couldn't afford to buy stuff. But you could go to the advance viewing and ask to handle the stuff, which we did.

I've just dug out my 1984 Sotheby's catalogue from 30th Aug 1984, and Lot 290 is the actual painted 'The Beatles' drum skin from the front of Ringo's kit, US Tour 1964.

Estimated price was only 2/3000 pounds!
posted by colie at 9:17 AM on October 11, 2012

It's being printed in a limited edition of 1,967. You can buy your own copy for £245.00 GBP. You can enter to win a copy too.
posted by Daddy-O at 10:58 AM on October 11, 2012

When I finish my time machine I am going to go back to 1843 and find the designer to tell him that the thing he spent a few hours producing (and for which he was probably paid three shillings and tenpence or something) will -- in about 170 years -- be a piece of artwork whose limited reproduction will be sold to raise a half-million pounds for some random dude who imitated it.

Hey, in 1989 I did a poster for my band's record release party. I wonder if in 2158 somebody will be selling knockoffs of it for a trillion dollars.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 12:57 PM on October 11, 2012

£245.00 a print?
More like "Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Postercopycat," right?
posted by chococat at 5:42 PM on October 11, 2012

Yeah, I could maybe see paying £245 if it was in a very limited edition run -- but nearly 2000 copies? Someone's having a laugh.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 7:55 AM on October 12, 2012

Very cool! I just ran across this and came here to post it. Shared it with my nerdy print-shop and letterpress friends, as well.
posted by Miko at 6:54 PM on October 13, 2012

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