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KAWS
KAWS SMALL LIE Brown (KAWS brown companion)

2017

$895

About

KAWS SMALL LIE Brown: Among KAWS’s signature “Companions,” Small Lie has the most childlike resonance. Clothed in overall shorts, the Pinocchio-inspired figure bows its head in shame as if hiding from a parent after creating trouble. KAWS debuted this character at Yorkshire Sculpture Park in 2016, as a 30-foot-tall version made of African hardwood. The following year, KAWS released 11-inch grey, brown, and black versions of the figure, produced in collaboration with Medicom Toy. Medium: Painted vinyl cast resin. Year: 2017. Dimensions: 11 × 4.5 inches. New/unopened; excellent condition. Stamped on the underside of foot from a sold out edition of unknown. Published by Medicom Japan. Authenticity guaranteed. KAWS (b. 1974, Jersey City, New Jersey; lives and works in Brooklyn, New York) is renowned for his prolific body of work that straddles the worlds of art and design to include paintings, murals, graphic and product design, street art, and large-scale sculptures. Over the last two decades KAWS has built a successful career with work that consistently shows his formal agility as an artist, as well as his underlying wit, irreverence, and affection for our times. His refined graphic language revitalizes figuration with both standout gestures and playful intricacies. KAWS often appropriates and draws inspiration from pop culture animations, forming a unique artistic vocabulary across mediums. Admired for his larger-than-life sculptures and precise paintings that emphasize line and color, KAWS’s cast of hybrid cartoon characters are the strongest examples of his exploration of humanity. As seen in his collaborations with global brands, the artist’s imagery possesses a sophisticated humor and reveals a thoughtful interplay with consumer products. With their broad appeal, KAWS’s artworks are highly sought-after by collectors inside and outside of the art world, establishing him as a uniquely prominent artist and influence in today’s culture.  Related Categories KAWS Companion. Shepard Fairey. Street Art. Damien Hirst. KAWS Pinocchio. KAWS passing through. Takashi Murakami.

Details

  • Creator
    KAWS (American)
  • Creation Year
    2017
  • Dimensions
    Height: 11 in. (27.94 cm)Width: 4.5 in. (11.43 cm)
  • Medium
  • Movement & Style
  • Period
  • Condition
  • Gallery Location
    NEW YORK, NY
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU35435752191

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    $20 $15 Standard Parcel Shipping
    to United States 0, arrives in 4-9 days.
    We recommend this shipping type based on item size, type and fragility.
    Ships From: New York, NY
  • Return Policy

    This item cannot be returned.

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About the Artist

KAWS

In the beginning, Brian Donnelly was just a kid from Jersey City, New Jersey, who got into the graffiti thing. KAWS was his tag, chosen simply because he liked the way it looked. Today, KAWS’s oeuvre encompasses art toys, sculptures and colorful paintings and prints that appropriate pop phenomena like the Smurfs, the Simpsons and SpongeBob SquarePants.

In the late 1990s, the artist, a 1996 graduate of New York’s School of Visual Arts, was making a living as an illustrator for the animation studio Jumbo Pictures. Like young Hansel and Gretel with their trail of crumbs, KAWS would mark the morning route to his downtown Manhattan office with “subvertising,” “interrupting” fashion advertisements by adding his colorful character Bendy, its sinuous length sliding playfully around the likes of a Calvin Klein perfume bottle or supermodel Christy Turlington.

These creations gained a following, to the point where work posted in the morning would disappear by lunchtime. Even in those early days, KAWS was hot on the resale market.

“When I was doing graffiti,” he once explained, “it meant nothing to me to make paintings if I wasn’t reaching people.” Instead of seeking entrée to the elite New York art world (which, frankly, wasn’t looking for a street artist anyway), KAWS moved to Japan, where a flourishing youth culture welcomed visionaries like him.

In 1999, he partnered with Bounty Hunter, a Japanese toy and streetwear brand, to release his first toy. Companion — an eight-inch-tall vinyl reimagining of Mickey Mouse, with a skull-and-crossbones head and trademark XX eyes — debuted with a limited run of 500. It sold out quickly.

Companion was the first of more than 130 toy designs, which came to include such characters as Chum, Blitz, Be@rbrick, BFF and Milo, each immediately recognizable as KAWS figures by their XX eyes. Fans have proved insatiable. In 2017, MoMA’s online store announced the availability of a limited supply of KAWS Companion figures; as avid collectors logged on to stake their claim, the website crashed — multiple times.

Companion is the most visible of the KAWS posse, appearing over the past decade in new postures and combinations in monumental works. These include Along the Way (2013), an 18-foot-tall wooden sculpture of two Companions leaning on each other for support; Together (2016), two Companions in a friendly embrace, which debuted during an exhibition of KAWS’s work at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, in Texas; and KAWS:HOLIDAY (2018), a 92-foot-long inflatable Companion floating on its back in Seoul’s Seokchon Lake. The sculptures were re-created as toys, blurring the lines between art and commerce.

KAWS’s visual language may be drawn from cartoons, but his work doesn’t necessarily evoke childlike joy. “My figures are not always reflecting the idealistic cartoon view that I grew up on,” he explains in the catalogue for the Fort Worth exhibition. “Companion is more real in dealing with contemporary human circumstances . . . . I think when I’m making work it also often mirrors what’s going on with me at that time.”

KAWS's résumé reads like a record of major 21st-century pop-culture moments. It includes his work with streetwear brands like A Bathing Ape and Supreme; his design for the cover of Kanye West’s 2008 album, 808s & Heartbreak; and his collaboration with designer Kim Jones on the Dior Homme Spring/Summer 2019 collection, Jones’s debut as the fashion brand’s creative director.

Learn how to spot a fake KAWS art toy, and browse authentic KAWS prints, sculptures and mixed media works on 1stDibs.

About the Seller
4.9 / 5
Located in NEW YORK, NY
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Established in 2014
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