Until 1 August 2015, Gagosian Gallery in Athens, Greece, is hosting a series of new paintings by American artist Richard Phillips.
Through his paintings, Phillips engages the theme of human obsessions regarding sexuality, politics, power, and death, which are constantly exploited in mainstream media. Subjecting popular images to a range of classical painterly techniques, he imbues them with new meaning. Expanding upon postmodern appropriation strategies through new and historical painting techniques, Phillips manipulates, recombines, amplifies, and undermines canonical images, challenging their dominant influence in contemporary culture. Departing from the more photorealistic tendencies of recent years, in his newest works Phillips uses celebrity portraits, retro textbook illustrations, logos, and Op Art motifs to produce compressed images. In the Warholian portrait Jim Morrison (2015), the rock star’s face is mirrored flatly and mechanically against a bright green background, while in Chinchillas and Guinea Pigs (2015), animals are similarly reduced to graphic silhouettes adorned with neon red, orange, and yellow stripes reminiscent of 1980s surf wear.
Richard Phillips was born in Massachusetts in 1962, and currently lives and works in New York. His works can be found in the public collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Denver Art Museum, Colorado; Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Texas; Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami; Tate Modern, London; and Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands.