Posts from 14th November 2003

Nov 03

A Prince amongst men

The Brown WedgePost a comment • 518 views

A Prince amongst men: I saw those Richard Prince paintings when they were at Sadie Coles HQ in London earlier this year. I’m pretty sure I liked them: I can remember enjoying being in the space, I think I even went to the show twice. I can also remember thinking things about them. I’m fairly sure the things I thought weren’t the same as Anthony’s thoughts below, but I can’t remember anything about my reactions at all.

Normally a sense of what I thought the art was getting at or what it was for lasts with me longer than the artist’s name, but this time there’s a big hole where some kind of emotional or critical response should be sitting.

I can understand that this may not be information of great use or interest to you, but I’m perplexed.


Do You SeePost a comment • 149 views

OH NO! WE’RE ALL DOOOOOOOOOOMED!!!! Yes, Horizon is back on BBC2, and this time it’s serious. The conveyor belt might stop you know [insert generation game cuddly toy joke here]. I don’t know why they stopped calling it the gulf stream, maybe the people who make those executive jets complained. Anyway, the usual repetition and theorising (well, you know, we think it might take 50 years and then it would be quite annoying, BUT IF IT HAPPENS IN 20 YEARS (which it won’t) WE ARE ALL DOOMED) in an attempt to build tension.

Two other things:
1. The full transcript of the show is available on the website, which I think is pretty cool (no pun intended), however it doesn’t tell you what the matching visuals were, eg: NARRATOR: If he is right then Britain could be heading for a massive drop in temperatures. It seems we could be heading for something like an ice age. The ice ages were one of the greatest forces nature has unleashed on our planet. cut to HUGE TOWERING GLACIERS with bits falling off into the sea (for the fourth time in two minutes).
2. None of this matters anyway, because, according to next week’s show we’ve ONLY GOT THREE YEARS ‘TIL THE WORLD ENDS ANYWAY…

Richard Prince-Nurse Paintings.

The Brown WedgePost a comment • 2,222 views

Richard Prince-Nurse Paintings.

A nurse is a mother/whore combined in one women, who will clean up yr puke and give you a comfort handjob all in the same night & because they comfort acts of violence, acts of violence are mythologized against them (Richard Cook thrillers, Abby Lockhart in peril on ER, the implications of Richard Speck as the first spree.) But the pulp novels of the 60s and 70s, whose images were raided for these works are sweet and Prince wants to add a level of discomfort.

In reproduction they are creepy into and unto themselves–ink jet prints are painted over with gestural abstractions, filled with the colours of blood,bile,feces, urine and phelgm. The only thing that doesn’t seem dirty are the nurses themselves, with wide white masks obfuscating faces or grimacing mouths emprisoned by sterile white cotton. In Washington Nurse, a blackened smeared figure looks menacing over a womens shoulder, In Nurse of Green Meadow, a white figure has fled to the edge of the field, she looks over her shoulder with hope. The pieces in reproduction have an intimate destruction, printed they seem to recycle themselves, from marred pulp to high art, thanks to post consumer paper. In life though I imagine the work to be much different, they are huge, 6 feet by 4 feet, 5 feet by 3 feet, 6. 5 feet by 5 feet. They are the size of men who live them. They would intimidate those who are smaller.

An artist who is so usually textual, it is odd how the text appears in these pieces. It is hidden, only certain words appear under a dozen layers of acrylic– they are naming devices mostly it’s the word nurse with a geographical adjectives (like surgical, dormitory, Washington, Park Avenue) hovering over sexulized saints- sometimes other words appear, all from the book covers themselves, and all working as a poem of absences rather then presences–you can see the phrase romance playing politics but not the rest of the tag line in Washington Nurses, and the phrase wrong men in nurses dormitory, but not much else.

Maybe this is making women victims again, and maybe there is an element of ownership here, but I think that this is more an act of fuck you to nostalgia, like how he castrated the marlboro man by taking away his phallus, he removes the sexuality of these women by reminding us of their size, their importance, the violence done against them, and the healing violence done by them.