Touched by the influence of Andy Warhol, champion of a young Jean-Michel Basquiat, Rene Ricard served as enfant terrible of the 1980s New York art scene, swinging effortlessly between poetry and art. This vibrant orange, gold, yellow and green oil
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Rene Ricard
This is not a Thanksgiving pumpkin: autumnal orange yellow and silver painting

1989

About

Touched by the influence of Andy Warhol, champion of a young Jean-Michel Basquiat, Rene Ricard served as enfant terrible of the 1980s New York art scene, swinging effortlessly between poetry and art. This vibrant orange, gold, yellow and green oil painting on paper evinces Ricard’s spontaneous and confident style at its best. Here, wild curlicues in green and black emanate from the bright orange pumpkin at the painting’s center. The pumpkin sits atop a pillow loosely defined in dark grey and bright silver. At the top of the composition, Ricard has scrawled “This is not a thanksgiving pumpkin,” continuing the statement with “It is or was Cinderella’s coach.” Ricard was a poet and art critic who published numerous books of poetry, and his increasing use of text in his work over the 1980's reflects this interest in the written word. Ricard's confessional hand-painted and hand-written poetry is almost always accompanied by the artist's outsized signature, integrated into the composition, or placed at its center. Here, Ricard’s outsized signature stands out in vibrant raspberry red paint, displaying the artist's unabashed confidence and flamboyance. “This is not a thanksgiving pumpkin - It is or was Cinderella’s coach” points to the transformative quality of fantasy. A pumpkin shifts into a coach, and silver paint assumes the preciousness of glittering treasure. Ricard’s confidence (and his bedroom-eyed allure) attracted the attention of Andy Warhol, and the young Rene (formerly Albert Napoleon Ricard) became his protege. He would appear in three Warhol films, even playing the Factory founder himself in "Andy Warhol Story". Warhol would later call the famously acid-tongued Ricard "The George Sanders of the Lower East Side, the Rex Reed of the art world." By the early 1980s, Rene Ricard was a fixture in the New York art scene, not only as an accomplished artist, but as a critic. Penning enlightening and poetic essays for Artforum, he turned his attention to rising stars such as Julian Schnabel and Alex Katz. Ricard famously wrote the first major article on Jean-Michel Basquiat. “The Radiant Child” is credited with launching Basquiat’s career, and is considered a seminal contemporary art essay.

Details

  • Movement & Style
  • Condition
    Excellent
  • Condition Details
    Pinholes in each corner. See photos.
  • Period
  • Dimensions
    H 40.5 in. x W 26 in.H 102.87 cm x W 66.04 cm
  • Gallery Location
    New York, NY
  • Reference Number
    LU121125189832
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