Richard Prince - Contemporary Art Day London Friday, February 12, 2010 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Marc Jancou Fine Art, New York

  • Catalogue Essay

    “I’d been working ten years and I still wasn’t known. So I wrote a joke on a piece of paper, and I’d invite people over and ask them, ‘Will you give me $10 for this?’ I knew I was onto something – if someone else had done it I would have been jealous. You couldn’t speculate about it. So much of art depends on the critic as the umpire. With a joke there’s nothing to interpret.”
    (S. Daly, Richard Prince as quoted in Vanity Fair, 2007)
    “Richard Prince is hailed as a master of consumerist appropriation. But looking closer at his practice reveals an artist not situated on the periphery of culture and looking in, nor merely decrypting and intellectualizing societal codes. Rather, we find somebody in the thick of this very culture who enjoys what he sees, feels and senses, and who enthusiastically engages with its reality. Yes, he is appropriating. But first and foremost, he is expressing, reconstructing, readjusting, transforming, adding to and inviting the spectator to be seduced by and participate in the pleasure of this reality –Prince’s fiction.”
    (Gunnar B. Kraven ‘Richard Prince – Painter of Fiction’ in Richard Prince, Canaries in the Coal Mine, Oslo, 2006, p. 63)

  • Artist Biography

    Richard Prince

    American • 1947

    For more than three decades, Prince's universally celebrated practice has pursued the subversive strategy of appropriating commonplace imagery and themes – such as photographs of quintessential Western cowboys and "biker chicks," the front covers of nurse romance novellas, and jokes and cartoons – to deconstruct singular notions of authorship, authenticity and identity.

    Starting his career as a member of the Pictures Generation in the 1970s alongside such contemporaries as Cindy Sherman, Robert Longo and Sherrie Levine, Prince is widely acknowledged as having expanded the accepted parameters of art-making with his so-called "re-photography" technique – a revolutionary appropriation strategy of photographing pre-existing images from magazine ads and presenting them as his own. Prince's practice of appropriating familiar subject matter exposes the inner mechanics of desire and power pervading the media and our cultural consciousness at large, particularly as they relate to identity and gender constructs.

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Untitled (Why phone ahead?)

Pencil on paper.
73 x 58.4 cm. (28 3/4 x 23 in).
Signed and dated 'Prince 85' lower right.

£60,000 - 80,000 

Contemporary Art Day

13 Feb 2010