AN iconic artwork collection paying homage to one of Britain's biggest 1960s rock bands is being displayed at a historic gig.
Sixties legends The Who were at the forefront of the Rock n Roll culture and the swinging sixties.
Their seminal 1973 album Quadrophenia formed the unforgettable soundtrack of the hit film of the same name featuring epic battles between the infamous Mods and Rockers.
Now a Hampshire man who owns a £1.8million collection featuring rare paintings inspired by their music and original merchandise from the film is exhibiting artefacts in London.
The paintings, along with antique Vespa scooters, Mod suits and a parka coat signed by one of the cast, are currently on show at two landmark gigs by the band at the O2 Arena last night and today Paul Kelly, from Southampton, is exhibiting his entire Whofreak Artwork at what is the band's 50th anniversary tour.
The Who Turns 50 tour initially launched last year but the final shows were postponed when singer Roger Daltrey fell ill with a throat infection. Now diehard fans have a fresh chance to watch the rock legends and see the exhibition.
Mr Kelly, 51, initially inherited the paintings - which feature Egyptian motifs and abstract designs - after his best friend the artist John Davis died in 2006.
Mr Davis, originally from Shirley, was commissioned in 1969 by the Who to do the artwork for their first book 'A Decade of the Who', eventually released in 1977.
The illustration collection was valued at £500,000 in 2008 and last year Mr Kelly signed a deal with the band's official merchandising company Bandmerch to create limited edition and order versions of them.
This, along with a collection of scooters, clothing and limited edition records, means the whole collection is worth an estimated £1.8m.
It comes after he initially tried to sell the paintings for £165,000 on global internet auction site in 2009 but received no takers.
Mr Kelly, who has often displayed the merchandise at The Who conventions, said: “It's an opportunity for people to see some rare merchandise, items from the film and 1960s culture representative of Britain in 1964.
“It's part of the British culture and they can reminisce about things that happened those days.”
Haling Mr Davis who he met at a history re-enactment society in Fordingbridge in 1991, he said: “Pete was a very close friend and the band all knew him well.
“By leaving me the artwork I am keeping his name alive and all the Who fans really appreciate what I've done.
“Lucky they didn't sell and I've been able to do this over the last eight years.”