Adam Partridge Auctioneers Cheshire
Auctioneer in Cheshire

11/09/2013 : Painting by former Beatle up for auction

A painting by former Beatle, Stuart Sutcliffe, is to be auctioned at Adam Partridge Auctioneers of Macclesfield.

Sutcliffe, who was born in Edinburgh in 1940, moved to Liverpool when he was 3. Interested in art from an early age, he was accepted into the Liverpool College of Art when he was 16. It was there that he was first introduced to John Lennon in 1957. Soon becoming close friends, they shared a flat together and in 1960, Lennon and Paul McCartney convinced Sutcliffe to buy a bass guitar and join their band.

In August 1960, the band travelled to Hamburg to hone their skills playing live and building up a name for themselves. It was while in Hamburg that they met Astrid Kirchherr, a photographer who had an influence on the style of the group. Kirchherr and Sutcliffe starting dating and when the group returned to Hamburg in 1961, the pair got engaged. In July of that year, Sutcliffe left the Beatles to concentrate on his art and was awarded a scholarship at the Hamburg College of Art, under the tutelage of one of the founders of the pop art movement, Eduardo Paolozzi.

Paolozzi described Sutcliffe as one of his best students, saying he was “very gifted and very intelligent”. In 1962, Sutcliffe collapsed in the middle of an art class and after having tests done in hospital, was told that the doctors couldn’t find any problems. On 10th April, he collapsed again and died in the ambulance. The cause of death was later found to be a ruptured aneurysm, resulting from a previous trauma to the head. He was 21 years old.

This particular painting was done around 1958-59 while Sutcliffe was at Liverpool College of Art. It is signed “Sutcliffe, Group II” and is poster paint on paper of a mother and child in what is probably a Liverpool street. Adam Partridge Auctioneers have valued the painting between £8,000 and £12,000 and it will up for sale on the 26th & 27th September. Owner of the auction house and star of BBC’s Flog It, Adam Partridge said “As Sutcliffe was so young when he passed away, there aren’t many of his works in existence, therefore it’s very rare to see one up for auction. This one was bought directly from his family and we’re very excited about the prospect of selling it.”

The item will be for sale at Adam Partridge Auctioneers on the 26th and 27th September and the catalogue will be able to be viewed online at