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  • Provenance

    Luhring Augustine & Hodes Gallery, New York

  • Exhibited

    New York, Luhring Augustine & Hodes Gallery, Christopher Wool, November 2 – December 3, 1988
    Holland, Stedelijk Museum, Horn of Plenty, January 14 – February 24, 1989
    San Francisco, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, New Work: Christopher Wool, July 6 – September 3, 1989

  • Catalogue Essay

    Untitled (P 71), 1988, comes from a period in Wool’s career near the inception of his signature style. Here, Wool’s particular approach centers around the use of a single decorative motif multiplied over and over until it fills the space of its surface. In Untitled (P 71), 1988, as in much of his work, the subject of Wool’s two-pronged attack and investigation of his minimalist and Pop Art forbearers. The work itself may be complex in its construction, yet the basis for its entire scale is a single figure.

    In addition to his Minimalist concept, however, Wool is equally adept at tackling the nuances of Pop Art. The appearance of Untitled (P 71), 1988 initially strikes a majestic tone, the aluminum support providing a surface industrial in its structure but perfectly suited for Wool’s subtle parody of “factory art”. Wool’s single motif resembles an ornamental S, its calligraphy a perfect fit for an indulgent turn in interior design. Instead of using decorative motifs from existing wallpaper or sources of mundane Americana, Wool uses a German designer to create the motifs, creating original symbols that echo our most common surroundings.

    Facing each other in mirrored pairs, the motifs extend to the very edges of the painting’s surface. Wool’s approach to painting the motifs matches his aluminum surface in its originality: he uses a combination of alkyd and flashe paint. While the alkyd possesses acidic qualities that literally burn and corrode the metallic surface of the piece, the flashe paint, in its indelibility, eats its way into the aluminum, taking up permanent residency. This relationship between the paint and the surface gives the piece a sculptural physicality, as the deep cuts of the alkyd add a third dimension to the painting.

PROPERTY OF AN AMERICAN COLLECTION

6

Untitled (P 71)

1988
alkyd and flashe on aluminum
96 x 72 in. (243.8 x 182.9 cm)
Signed, numbered and dated “Wool, 1988, P 71” on the reverse.

Estimate
$1,000,000 - 1,500,000 

Sold for $1,370,500

Contemporary Art Part I

7 November 2011
New York