Published on the occasion of Christopher Wool's 2008 exhibition at New York's Skarstedt Gallery, this concise collection of 17 black-and-white pattern paintings made between 1987 and 2000, set alongside 10 installation shots, serves as historic documentation of works that have rarely been shown or published, but which remain perennially influential. Born in Chicago in 1955, Wool came to prominence in New York in the 1980s with his graffiti-like text paintings, which are full of slang, song lyrics and action painting drips. Loved and loathed by critics, Wool has been described by the Village Voice's Jerry Saltz as, "a very pure version of something dissonant and poignant. His all-or-nothing, caustic-cerebral, ambivalent-belligerent gambit is riveting and even a little thrilling. It's what makes him one of the more optically alive painters out there."
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Eric Banks, former senior editor of Artforum, is a writer based in New York. Ann Goldstein is Senior Curator at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Writer and musician Richard Hell is the author of the novels Go Now and Godlike, and of the collection Hot and Cold. Jim Lewis is the author of three novels—most recently, The King is Dead—and numerous essays on the visual arts. Glenn O’Brien is a writer who lives in New York. He is editorial director of Interview and Art in America. Anne Pontégnie is an independent curator and art critic who lives in Brussels.
Hans Werner Holzwarth is a book designer and editor based in Berlin, with numerous publications mainly on contemporary art and photography. For TASCHEN he has edited, among other titles, Jeff Koons, Christopher Wool, Albert Oehlen and Neo Rauch.
Christopher Wool's paintings put me in mind of rock'n'roll songs and how they recycle the same slender means: three, maybe four chords, a plaintive lyric repeated over and over in strict 4/4 time. It's not much compared with Hindemith, but an electric guitar in the right hands can be so riveting that it's the only sound you want to hear. (David Salle Town & Country)
Published to commemorate his retrospective at the Guggenheim museum, this catalog presents a vast selection of Christopher Wool's paintings, photographs and other works to date. (Noelle Lacombe CULTURED)
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