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  • Provenance

    Gavin Brown's enterprise, New York

  • Catalogue Essay

    “Art is really just about developing a sensitivity to your environment and making comments about the world you’re living in in a beautiful way.” Rob Pruitt

    In Chinese Buffet, 2011, Pruitt cloaks nearly the entirety of the canvas in onyx glitter, revealing only hints of the raw fabric below. The dazzling ebony surface, painstakingly applied, comprises an ambrosial scene of docile pandas happily chewing on bamboo. The four creatures are surrounded by a curtain of shoots and stalks; the rendering in radiant black infuses the backdrop with a thriving energy as the lush jungle sprouts and stretches up and beyond the canvas. The lazing pandas are blissfully full and content, blind to the danger that may loom beyond the splendid wasteland. “The paintings’ clichéd imagery neutralizes their real endangered status making us less culpable in the creatures’ pending extinction. And therein lies the beauty of the clichéd image.” (M. Grabner, “Rob Pruitt,” Frieze Magazine, Issue 160 (June-August, 2001)).

    Rob Pruitt’s lustrous black canvases have undoubtedly been praised and lauded for both the universal likability of their subjects, and the poignancy of their implications. The panda bear, here accomplished in jet black glitter, now stands as a symbol of Pruitt’s oeuvre, capturing a Pop sensibility with a familiar visual trope. Indeed, the dazzling miniscule flecks—an homage perhaps to Warhol’s shimmering diamond dust canvases—reflect the classic Pop sensibility for which Pruitt is known. He portrays the universal image of the panda in a manner that invites the viewer in, and glamourizes the reality of the subject’s fate. Indeed, the viewer is given an obligation in his viewing, knowing that to fall in love with the subject is to then realize the rarity, and soon impossibility, of the pleased and satisfied creatures that sleep before us.



Chinese Buffet

enamel paint and glitter on canvas
80 1/8 x 60 1/8 in. (203.5 x 152.7 cm.)

$100,000 - 150,000 

Sold for $305,000

Contact Specialist
Zach Miner
Head of Evening Sale
[email protected]
+1 212 940 1256

Contemporary Art Evening Sale

New York 11 November 2013 7PM