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  • Provenance

    Gavin Brown’s enterprise, New York

  • Catalogue Essay

    “In the original Philippe Halsman photograph (Salvador Dali in voluptate mors, 1944), a skull wrought from naked bodies floats like a thought bubble above a dapper Dali; in his version, Uklański places himself at the center of the cranium. Draped with beautiful naked women, he closes his eyes as if lost in some kind of super-creative trance, in the manner of the famous collective portraits issued by the male Surrealists. It is a clever image that hovers among allegory, camp, and bad taste; as melancholy as a memento mori, as ridiculous as Austin Powers. Like much of Uklański's work in photography, it wraps itself in cliché-- the figure of the heroic virile male artist, the conjunction of death and eroticism-- in order to tap into the power and the easy pleasures of popular-cultural fantasies. Halsman's motif resurfaced on the back of the moth masking Jodie Foster's mouth on the Silence of the Lambs movie poster, and Uklański's billboard-scale image enters this elaborate system of feedback between art history and film advertising in order to question, just as Dance Floor and The Full Burn do, where aesthetics and entertainment begin and end. ‘Please tell me what the difference is,’ Uklański says.” (K. Bush, “Once Upon a Time in the East: The Art of Piotr Uklański”, Artforum, November, 2002)


Untitled (Skull)

Blueboard ink print.
This work is from an edition of three plus one artist’s proof and is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity signed by the artist. This work exists as a site-specific commission. The dimensions of the work will be determined according to the size of the wall on which the work is to be displayed. Phillips de Pury & Company will assist with the production of the present edition with the supervision of the artist. Should the work be relocated, it must be refabricated to the size of the new wall under the artist's supervision.

$200,000 - 300,000 

Sold for $228,000

Contemporary Art Part I

16 Nov 2006, 7pm
New York