Published by Hayward Publishing. Text by Ralph Rugoff, Laura Hoptman, Will Self, David Means.
Painter and sculptor George Condo (born 1957) has inhabited a broad swath of cultural contexts over his three-decade career, from the early-1980s East Village scene to a collaboration with William Burroughs to making album cover art for Phish and, most recently, Kanye West. Early in his career, Condo was friendly with Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring and briefly worked at Andy Warhol's Factory. Having been included in the Whitney Biennial in 1987, by 2010 he was once again judged so original that a bronze sculpture of his was placed in that year's Biennial. Condo's loose, imaginative approach to portraiture has distinguished him throughout the decades: "There was a time when I realized that the central focal point of portraiture did not have to be representational in any way," he said in 1992. "You don't need to paint the body to show the truth about a character. All you need is the head and the hands." George Condo: Mental States surveys the artist's career from 1982 to the present day, focusing on his portrait paintings but also including a selection of sculptural busts made in materials such as gold and bronze. Organized by theme, and including 100 images of artworks in addition to writings by Will Self, David Means, Ralph Rugoff and Laura Hoptman, this volume explores Condo's relationship to art history, popular culture and contemporary society.
Published by Holzwarth Publications. Interview by Ralph Rugoff.
This collection of bizarrely sensuous new paintings, drawings, and sculptures by the well-known New York City artist is based mainly on a complex character named Jean Louis, whose multiple personalities include a chauffeur, a butler and a maid, as well as other assorted relatives. We also meet "Uncle Joe," who's naked from the waist down and balancing a wine glass upon his raised foot, and a reclining female nude, clenching a cigarette between the fingers of an exceedingly hairy and Dr. Seuss-ish black glove. In this new, highly ironic body of work, much of which refers directly to Picasso, Condo aligns himself with a long line of art historical portraiture. His subjects are as elegant and alienating as they are absurd and comical; any notion of the classical is subverted through his outrageous morphology, as he enjoys the playful interweaving of high and low.
Published by Hatje Cantz Publishers. Edited by Agnes Husslein-Arco and Thomas Kellein. Essays by Margrit Brehm and Stacey Schmidt.
“A woman is something you can glorify, you can be horrified by, you can be paranoid in front of, you can love, you can hate.” So says painter George Condo, not the first artist to have tackled the subject of “woman” and certainly not the last. Nevertheless, Condo's particular brand of cartoonish figurative painting, with its equal debts to Surrealism, Pop art and painterly abstraction, has gone a long way to pushing the means through which women might be represented. Herewith are One Hundred Women, drawn, painted and sculpted by the American artist--some of them nudes, some of them portraits, some of them part of large-scale art-historical collages. Each woman bears at least some trace of Condo's signature style, replete with animalistic grotesqueness and stylistic references to such modern masters as Goya, Velazquez, Picasso and Warhol.