Nigel Cooke - Contemporary Art Day Sale London Monday, June 29, 2015 | Phillips
  • Provenance

    Stuart Shave / Modern Art, London

  • Exhibited

    London, Royal Academy of Arts, Summer Exhibition, June-August 2010

  • Literature

    Nigel Cooke, Walther König, Cologne, 2011, pp. 92-93 (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    "When does meaning get into the picture and convert the struggle into a second picture, outside of the mere paint, drawing the mind into a story, a setting, a drama?" Nigel Cooke, 2012

    Nigel Cooke takes a keen interest in the theory and practice of painting. He is well known for his quasi-surreal landscapes, scrawled with graffiti and populated by bizarre images from a fractured world of signifiers – disembodied heads, traumatised, chain-smoking vegetables, and eerie humanoid wanderers – which form complex dialogues with the process of representation. The present lot, like many of Cooke’s works, features a vagrant figure who may reflect the artist’s own persona: the wastelands of dereliction and decay that these characters inhabit are often littered with the detritus of his studio. The image presented is unsettling and wryly amusing in monumental scale. Talking of his cartoon vegetable motifs, Cooke has said ‘I sort of feel that combination of simplicity and worldweariness has a certain “flavour;” it has a moronic and rather hysterical flavour that I want to increase.’ (Nigel Cooke in conversation with Ingvild and Stephan Goetz, 2013, The hirsute and isolated denizen of Me Time, who features throughout the In Da Club series, has a similar dark absurdity; he stands drunkenly lopsided amid twee musical notes, brandishing an oversized baseball bat in a darkly neon-lit world of his own. Far from gleeful abandon, he seems to configure a diseased or addled internal state. Both confusing and compelling, this strange icon of comical abjection is realised in intense detail, inviting both mockery and sympathy.


In Da Club - Me Time

oil on linen
220 x 195.3 cm (86 5/8 x 76 7/8 in.)
Titled 'ME TIME' lower right. Signed, titled, numbered and dated 'NIGEL COOKE N. Cooke NCA 68 'IN DA CLUB - ME TIME' 2010' on the overlap.

£80,000 - 120,000 

Sold for £98,500

Contact Specialist
Henry Highley
Head of Sale
+ 44 20 7318 4061

Contemporary Art Day Sale

London Auction 30 June 2015 2pm