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  • Provenance

    Acquired directly from the artist; Private collection, New York

  • Catalogue Essay

    George Condo: I would think the greatest fear of an artist is to be banished from the history of art; to be expelled from art history. And that brings me to ask, “What are the forbidden apples of art that should not be picked?” Or is it what Cézanne showed us – that it’s the apple itself, once again, that needs transformation. I think Cézanne’s apples come from Chardin’s still lifes. These sublime apples are brutally transformed by Cézanne into something that indicated various planes and shifting perspectives in a single painting, which as we know led to Cubism. In effect, this is what I am talking about by introducing simultaneous languages into one image. But rather than ways of seeing, it involves ways of thinking; substituting mathematical formulas of perspective with a new system of perception which truly differentiates the word ecletic from dialectic. You could call it a kind of harmonic resolution of opposites.
    Ralph Rugoff: You mentioned earlier that the Existential Portraits are dealing with a pervasive contemporary despair and perhaps also isolation. In a certain respect, these works seem like a kind of delirious translation and updating of some of Edward Hopper’s melancholy images of alienated urbanites.
    GC: I wanted to capture the characters in these paintings at the extreme height of whatever moment they’re in – in that static moment of chaos – and to picture them as abstract compositions that are set in destitute places and isolated rooms. Everything takes place in a relatively impoverished kind of situation. In that sense I thought a little about Hopper capturing the despair of loneliness. Hopper always uses a surprising color here and there in his painting, and the sorrow is suspended with a touch of light.
    George Condo, in interview with Ralph Rugoff, “The Enigma of Jean Louis,” from G. Condo, George Condo: Existential Portraits: Sculpture, Drawings, and Paintings 2005-2006, Berlin, 2006, pp. 8 - 9

  • Artist Biography

    George Condo

    American • 1957

    Picasso once said, "Good artists borrow, great artists steal." Indeed, American artist George Condo frequently cites Picasso as an explicit source in his contemporary cubist compositions and joyous use of paint. Condo is known for neo-Modernist compositions staked in wit and the grotesque, which draw the eye into a highly imaginary world. 

    Condo came up in the New York art world at a time when art favored brazen innuendo and shock. Student to Warhol, best friend to Basquiat and collaborator with William S. Burroughs, Condo tracked a different path. He was drawn to the endless inquiries posed by the aesthetics and formal considerations of Caravaggio, Rembrandt and the Old Masters.

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Big Game Hunter


Oil on canvas.

60 x 52 1/8 in. (152.4 x 132.4 cm).

Signed and dated “Condo 06” on the overlap and reverse. 

$200,000 - 300,000 

Contemporary Art Part I

13 Nov 2008, 7pm
New York