Joking Gents | Richard Prince meets John Dempsey
‘Cartoon Over Cartoon’ at Sadie Coles presents new works by Richard Prince, huge works on canvas, superimposing colorful acrylic painting with inkjet prints of John Dempsey cartoons. John Dempsey, dubbed the Gary Cooper of cartoons, was a veteran freelance magazine cartoonist whose full-page, color cartoons lampooning contemporary America were a staple of Playboy magazine for five decades.
Richard Prince, the contemporary pictophag, who tries to eat up any image that smells like pop spirit, has a long-standing reputation of re-telling jokes, thus it was only a question of time that these frivolous gentlemen meet.
Sadly, this enounter only takes place on the canvas, Mr. Dempsey died at the age of 83 back in 2002. John Dempsey, who was drawing till his last day, was praised for his use of color in his Playboy cartoons.
“He enhanced the whole idea of color.” New Yorker cartoonist Sam Gross
Instead of the watercolors and acrylics common among other cartoonists, he worked in a medium known as Dr. Martin’s dyes. As a result, his flesh tones were deliberately unconventional, or “shocking pink,” as he called them.
The frivolous gentleman from California, as politically incorrect as Richard Prince, would have loved the strident colorful, graffiti style paintings of Picasso-like beings that look at the spectator with this “Have you heard the one….” gaze.
‘Cartoon Over Cartoon’, off-color joke told in a most colorful and real gentlemanly way.
On display till June 18th at Sadie Coles