White Paintings

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Lady Doc II, 1992 Acrylic And Silkscreen On Canvas 106 X 116 Inches 269.2 X 294.6 Cm © Courtesy of the artist & Skarstedt Gallery
White Paintings

20 E. 79th St.
New York, NY 10075
November 8th, 2012 - December 15th, 2012

upper east side
Tue-Fri 9-6:30; Sat 10-6


Skarstedt Gallery is pleased to announce the exhibition White Paintings by Richard Prince comprising ten paintings from the series executed during the early 1990s.

Celebrated for his appropriation of advertising images and photographs during the early 1970s, Richard Prince began in the 1980s to explore the relationship between image and language, pairing jokes from books and magazine, typically satirical one-liners, with referential and non-referential imagery, mostly cartoons. Prince’s early Joke paintings transformed from monochromatic rigidly composed works into free-floating combinations of jokes and stripped-down layered imagery in the 1990s.

Prince’s White Paintings are raw and energetic in comparison to his more straightforward “re-photographs” of the 1970s and the Monochromatic Jokes of the 1980s. In the White Paintings, handwritten and printed jokes mingle with gestural marks, silkscreened imagery, and graphic fragments all strewn across a white-pigmented backdrop. Prince’s hand is present in these works with their painterly white texture, spirited whorls, and handwritten jokes. In this series, he uses appropriation in a different fashion as he evokes the work of the great American painters of the 1950s such as Cy Twombly and Robert Rauschenberg.

Richard Prince was born in the Panama Canal Zone in 1949. Moving to New York City in the early 1970s, he eventually took a job at Time-Life in the tear-sheets department, which afforded him a constant exposure to contemporary consumer advertisements. It was there that he started taking photographs of cowboys, particularly the image of the Marlboro Man, which jumpstarted his career. Prince has exhibited extensively throughout the United States and Europe. Recent solo exhibitions of his work have been held in institutions such as the Museo Picasso Malaga in 2012, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in 2007, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Redefining concepts of authorship, ownership and the artist, Prince has distinguished himself as a great American contemporary artist. He now lives and works in upstate New York.