Seth Price - New Now Evening Sale New York Monday, February 29, 2016 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Reena Spaulings Fine Art, New York
    Private Collection (acquired from the above in 2005)

  • Catalogue Essay

    "At this point the elasticity of the thing is so great that anything can be called a bomber. That history is just an essence you, like, spray on." Seth Price

    A subtle, slick, and ghostly impression of a vintage leather bomber jacket, Seth Price’s Untitled (Pearlescent White Jacket) depicts a cascading form in shimmering iridescent vacuum-formed plastic. A material typically associated with commercial packaging and mass production, the process of heating a sheet of plastic to a malleable state and then molding its surface to a form contained within, blurs the lines between traditional modes of artistic production- printing and casting- and that of a commercially produced, everyday product. In a nod to Duchamp’s readymade, Price’s series of wall reliefs present domestic items as objects to be dissected and unpacked.

    The form of Untitled (Pearlescent White Jacket) is literal - a result of a material being formed around an object that it depicts - yet it is highly subjective. A bomber jacket itself conjures multiple impressions: the embodiment of punk subversion, the uniform of a World War I fighter pilot, the subculture of the 1950’s greaser, or the early hip-hop fashion of the 1980’s. Self-reflexively juxtaposing form and meaning, Price’s use of the vacuum-form process, and the material’s envelopment of an object to take on that form, reflects both the corporeal function of a jacket to envelop one’s body - the physical function of packaging to enclose and contain objects, and the packaging of meaning, memory, and history.

    Price’s studio practice is a reflection of the manufacturing technology of today, and Untitled (Pearlescent White Jacket) playfully employs these modes of production to indict the history of sculpture. Stylistically, Price’s composition lends itself to the canon of relief sculpture, with the vacuum-formed process compressing three-dimensional space towards the two-dimensional, and the pearlescent plastic mimicking the multifaceted surface of marble; however, the relative ease of Price’s method dispels these antiquated modes of production, along with the associated myth of the artist as a master craftsman.


Untitled (Pearlescent White Jacket)

vacuum formed high-impact polystyrene
55 x 36 1/2 in. (139.7 x 92.7 cm)

$200,000 - 300,000 

Sold for $197,000

Contact Specialist
Rebekah Bowling
Head of Sale
New York
+ 1 212 940 1250

New Now Evening Sale

New York Auction 29 February 2016 6pm