Lot 58
  • 58

Dan Colen

100,000 - 150,000 GBP
116,500 GBP
bidding is closed


  • Dan Colen
  • Shitface (Tribute to Joe Bradley)
  • signed, titled, inscribed Dan Colen & Joe Bradley, and dated 2007 twice on the reverse of the top canvas
  • oil and gum on canvas stretched over Joe Bradley stretchers, in four parts


Peres Projects, Berlin

Ernesto Esposito, Naples

Acquired directly from the above by the present owner


Bologna, MAMbo – Museo d’Arte Moderna di Bologna, Cara Domani opere dalla collezione Ernesto Esposito, 2012

Catalogue Note

Created in 2007, Shitface (Tribute to Joe Bradley) brilliantly combines Dan Colen’s chewing gum paintings with his distinctive utilisation of oil paint to imitate pigeon droppings. Wittily posing as a form of ‘collaboration’ between Colen himself and Joe Bradley – an artist who exhibited twice at Peres Projects in 2007 – Shitface (Tribute to Joe Bradley) acts as a unique subversion of Bradley’s corpus of ‘Robot’ works. Using stretchers which had been prepared by Bradley, Colen graphitises his contemporary’s trademark canvases via a dissident and humorous reinterpretation of abstract expressionist modes of creation – particularly those epitomised by Jackson Pollock and his canon of action painting. Appropriating Bradley’s own subversion of Minimalist principles, Colen intervenes and sabotages the other artist’s inquiry through the inclusion of his own signature use of gum and painterly simulation of bird droppings. The mocking, child-like smiley face that crowns the canvas body further anthropomorphises the work, whilst its elevated height endows Shitface (Tribute to Joe Bradley) with connotations of grandeur traditionally associated with public monuments – here made authentic via the sullying stain that pervades all inner-city public landmarks. In its amusing yet thought-provoking fusion of traditional oil paint with the thoroughly contemporary and base material of chewed-up and spat-out chewing gum, Shitface (Tribute to Joe Bradley) is a parodic archetype of Colen’s sardonic and contentious artistic practice.