This volume features new paintings and drawings by the American painter Elizabeth Peyton, published on the occasion of her first solo exhibition at Gagosian Gallery in Paris. With the statement "A painter can say all he wants to with fruit, flowers, or even clouds," Edouard Manet evoked the genre of still-life painting to rebuff the heroic and overcharged history paintings of his time. More than a century later, Elizabeth Peyton's jewel-like paintings reaffirm Manet's belief in the quiet potency of an enduring intimiste genre. Although Peyton's paintings infer a deep knowledge of historical artistic forbears from Goya to Warhol, this awareness is processed through an instinctual understanding of the time in which she lives. Combining her insights with modest scale, a lush yet tremulous palette, and extreme graphic sensitivity, her paintings and drawings are testaments to a passion for beauty in all its forms, from the sublime to the everyday. Portraits of artists both historical and contemporary are rendered from photographs or from life. Peyton imbues each likeness with a startling freshness and immediacy, although like a still life it is distanced from its subject.
Elizabeth Peyton was a leader in contemporary painting's return to figuration in the 1990s. Her modest-scale, jewel-like paintings show a deep knowledge of forebears from Édouard Manet and John Singer Sargent to Andy Warhol but are also intimately connected with the culture of late-20th-century America. Her portraits and drawings of friends, family, and personal heroes include depictions of Kurt Cobain, Liam Gallagher, and art world acquaintances like Rirkrit Tiravanija and Matthew Barney. Peyton's seductively moody celebrations of youth, fame, and beauty are notable for their brilliant color and graphic sense.
Published by Gagosian / Rizzoli
HARDCOVER, 10.5 X 12.7 IN. / 144 PGS / 120 COLOR / Fully Illustrated