Raymond Pettibon

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) presents Artists Inspired by Music: Interscope Reimagined, an exhibition that revisits groundbreaking music through visual art. Artists often cite music as a source of inspiration, capturing the sonic experience through color and form, or translating musical innovations into their own practices. In this exhibition, a diverse, intergenerational group of contemporary visual artists are in creative dialogue with iconic musical artists. These artists responded to songs and albums released by Interscope Records over the last three decades with works of their own in a range of media. The exhibition will present over 50 artworks by 46 visual artists; a majority of the works are newly commissioned pieces and will be presented for the first time to the public.

Featured visual artists include Cecily Brown, Lauren Halsey, Rashid Johnson, Takashi Murakami, Ed Ruscha, Raymond Pettibon, and more; many of the artists are represented in LACMA’s permanent collection. Iconic musicians from the last three decades include Dr. Dre, Billie Eilish, Kendrick Lamar, Lady Gaga, Nine Inch Nails, and more.

A work titled Atomic by Raymond Pettibon, dated 2019
Raymond Pettibon, Atomic, 2019
Collection Lambert, 2021

Imagined as part of the program of BD 2020—deemed the “Year of the Comic Strip” in France – the exhibition Comics Trip! is envisaged as an incisive journey into the heart of radical drawing practices within contemporary art. It investigates the links that artists have forged with comic strip aesthetics and narrative drawing over the past sixty years and sheds light on the work of certain alternative comic strip artists working in the underground or whose practice deliberately departs from the expectations of a restrictive mass culture industry.  

Bringing together the drawings, paintings, sculptures, videos, music, and documents of over thirty artists from the 1960s to today, Comics Trip! presents several generations of artists engaged in deconstructing our relationship with the canons of good taste and beauty, in breaking down borders between high art and popular culture, and whose work is imbued by the subcultures with whom they share time and space and that they feed into.

Raymond Pettibon displaces the pop aesthetic to the heart of hallucinatory drawings that initially feed into the underground music scene as sleeve art—for Black Flag and later Sonic Youth—before gaining autonomy and deploying an entirely new narrative schema, outlining with unprecedented boldness the entire mythology of an America beset by paranoia, that seems to live only through the adherence to messianic beliefs, whether from the major texts of monotheistic religion, New Age philosophies, conspiracy theories, or simply modern capitalism and the founding myths of the American way of life.

An installation view of the exhibition titled My Cartography: The Erling Kagge Collection dated 2020
Installation view, My Cartography: The Erling Kagge Collection, 2020

My Cartography. The Erling Kagge Collection is part of the contemporary art exhibition series organized by Fundación Banco Santander at the Art Gallery located in the Grupo Santander City. On this occasion, My Cartography brings us closer to the vision of contemporary art of the Norwegian collector Erling Kagge.

Erling Kagge is a writer and editor, as well as an adventurer who became famous for three extraordinary expeditions to the North Pole, the South Pole, and Mount Everest. Over the past twenty years, Kagge has built a personal, coherent, and surprisingly fresh collection. The prestigious curator Bice Curiger has selected 188 pieces for the exhibition, highlighting renowned artists such as Ian Cheng, Eliza Douglas, Olafur Eliasson, Wolfgang Tillmans, Raymond Pettibon, and Franz West. My Cartography: The Erling Kagge Collection opens up a vast horizon that invites visitors to immerse themselves in a rich universe of ideas and suggestive questions.

Raymond Pettibon started his artistic career in the demimonde of punk rock—illustrating record covers for his brother, Black Flag’s Greg Ginn, and the influential SST label—and has never stopped being a punk. Influenced by cartoons, but also by William Blake, and appended with discontinuous fragments of text reflecting Pettibon’s voluminous reading—for a seeming renegade, he is simultaneously something of a bookish intellectual—his art serves as a large-scale indictment of American society, of its sublimated violence in sports, sexism, warlike tendencies, conservatism, and capitalist obsession. A drawing of a sour-faced, old-fashioned, pistol-toting moll, captioned “$5,000 for the mink ... a little more for the girl” wraps several of these concerns succinctly together. Another drawing, featuring a screaming bear cub, compares mother polar bears to—well, who, we might wonder—as we read that they wouldn’t send their cubs around the world to kill brown bears. Pettibon’s aesthetic, at once fixed and seemingly endlessly replenishable, may seem sociable and familiar, even halfway wistful, but there is genuine venom in his ink.

Exhibition Catalogue

A COVID face mask designed by Raymond Pettibon.

Wedel Art Collective and MATCHESFASHION have collaborated with six artists—Raymond Pettibon, Barbara Kruger, Jenny Holzer, Rashid Johnson, Lorna Simpson, and Rosemarie Trockel—to create face masks in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The masks are being sustainably produced with three layers of 100% cotton in accordance with the French government’s regulations for Category 1 face masks, recommended for persons in regular contact with the public. Worn correctly, Category 1 face masks reduce the chance of the mask-wearer spreading the virus. We wear reusable cotton masks to protect each other and reduce the overall environmental viral load.

Half of the proceeds will be donated to the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund and the other half will be split between two artist relief charities, Artist Relief Coalition and Common Practice, both of which are supporting US and UK artists whose livelihoods have been affected by the pandemic.  

The designed masks are available for six months exclusively at MATCHESFASHION, beginning August 24.

To read more about the project and to purchase a mask, please click here.

September 18, 2018–March 31, 2019

For the last fifty years, artists have explored the hidden operations of power and the symbiotic suspicion between the government and its citizens that haunts western democracies. Everything Is Connected: Art and Conspiracy is the first major exhibition to tackle this perennially provocative topic. It traces the simultaneous development of two kinds of art about conspiracy.

The first half of the exhibition comprises works by artists who hew the public record, uncovering hidden webs of deceit—from the shell corporations used by New York's largest private landlord to interconnected networks encompassing politicians, businessmen, and arms dealers. In the second part, other artists dive headlong into the fever dreams of the disaffected, creating fantastical works that nevertheless uncover uncomfortable truths in an age of information overload and weakened trust in institutions.

Featuring seventy works by thirty artists in media ranging from painting and sculpture to photography, video, and installation art, and from 1969 to 2016, Everything Is Connected: Art and Conspiracy presents an alternate history of postwar and contemporary art that is also an archaeology of our troubled times. The exhibition features works from artists including Sarah Charlesworth, Hans Haacke, Rachel Harrison, Jenny Holzer, Mike Kelley, Mark Lombardi, Cady Noland, Trevor Paglen, Raymond Pettibon, Jim Shaw, and Sue Williams.

Exhibition Catalogue

August 30–November 17, 2019

The exhibition Never Again. Art against War and Fascism in the 20th and 21st centuries, organized on the 80th anniversary of the outbreak of World War II relies on three precisely determined focal points—Guernica and the 1930s, the “Arsenal” exhibition and the 1950s, contemporary art and (post-)fascism—to present the singular and distinctive tradition of anti-fascist art. Although the exhibition features primarily historic materials and iconic artworks that shaped the form of anti-fascist and anti-war resistance, the questions posed by the show concern the contemporary era.

Never Again. Art against War and Fascism in the 20th and 21st centuries identifies iconic images and key aspects of the anti-fascist tradition throughout the above moments in history. We use images as a prism through which to portray the complexity of the anti-fascist stance and the variety of approaches to the problem: from political satire and testimonies of atrocities to apocalyptic forecasts and visual propaganda, to more ambiguous abstract articulations of pro-democratic and anti-authoritarian content. Artists such as Wilhelm Sasnal and Raymond Pettibon depict systemic violence through the prism of subcultural aesthetics—both artists frequently illustrate album covers by punk rock bands as well as create posters and leaflets with anti-fascist content. Sasnal’s paintings feature references to World War II and the Cold War era with consciously used quotations from the then language of propaganda and art. Struggle with fascism is never won once and for all, the artists emphasize that this threat compels constant vigilance and mobilizing the persuasive potential of art.

The exhibition presents works by such artists from the 1930s: Maja Berezowska, Alice Neel, Dora Maar, George Grosz, John Heartfield, Jonasz Stern, Leopold Lewicki, Sasza Blonder, Adam Marczyński, Bolesław Stawiński, Bronisław Wojciech Linke, Stanisław Osostowicz; fromthe 1950s: Izaak Celnikier, Alina Szapocznikow, Jerzy Tchórzewski, Erna Rosenstein, Marek Oberländer, Jan Dziędziora, Jerzy Tchórzewski, Tadeusz Trepkowski, Waldemar Cwenarski, Wojciech Fangor, Andrzej Wróblewski, Xavier Guerrero; and today: Alice Creischer, Nikita Kadan, Forensic Architecture, Jonathan Horowitz, Goshka Macuga, Mario Lombardo, Mykola Ridnyi, Hito Steyerl, Martha Rosler, Raymond Pettibon, Wilhelm Sasnal, The Society of Friends of Maxwell Itoya and Wolfgang Tillmans.

A detail from a mural by Raymond Pettibon, titled No Title (Daumier-Pettibon Father of...), dated 2019.

March 2–August 4, 2019

Curated by Andrea Lutz and David Schmidhauser, this exhibition brought together the work of Raymond Pettibon and the French caricaturist, printmaker, sculptor, and painter Honoré Daumier (1808–1879), an artist renowned both in his time and now for his incisive social and political critiques. Pettibon has long cited the importance of 18th- and 19th-century graphic artists for his drawings, which have come to occupy their own genre of potent and dynamic artistic commentary. As Peter Schjeldahl writes in a review of Pettibon’s extensive solo exhibition A Pen of All Work at the New Museum in 2017, "Though never employing caricature, the work’s effect updates a tradition of pointed grotesquerie that has roots in Hogarth, Goya, and Daumier and branches in the modern editorial cartoon: aesthetic pleasure checked by the absurdity or the horror—the scandal—of the subject at hand."

Daumier – Pettibon featured a new mural (No Title (Daumier-Pettibon Father of...)) created by Pettibon specially for the exhibition as well as a large selection of his works on paper spanning the late 1970s to 2017. These were presented alongside prints, paintings, and sculptures by Daumier. Pettibon described this exhibition as "A dream come true."

Through March 10, 2019, David Zwirner presented a Viewing Room of Pettibon’s drawings from the 1980s, many of which had never been shown before.  Raymond Pettibon: Noir highlighted a body of work that was made while the artist was living in Los Angeles, embracing the wide spectrum of American high and low culture. This Viewing Room was curated by gallery director Andrea Cashman.

Image: Raymond Pettibon, No Title (Daumier-Pettibon Father of...), 2019 (detail)

A drawing by Raymond Pettibon titled, No Title (The new acrylic...), dated 1984.

Raymond Pettibon: Noir

David Zwirner presented a Viewing Room of Raymond Pettibon drawings from the 1980s, many which had never been shown before. Raymond Pettibon: Noir highlighted a body of work that was made while the artist was living in Los Angeles, embracing the wide spectrum of American high and low culture. The Viewing Room was curated by gallery director Andrea Cashman.

Image: Raymond Pettibon, No Title (The new acrylic...), 1984 (detail)


Dior artistic director Kim Jones collaborated with Raymond Pettibon for the Dior Homme Fall/Winter 2019–2020 collection, which debuted in Paris on Friday, January 18.

New and existing works by Pettibon have been reinterpreted for the collection as prints, embroideries, knits, and jacquards. The centerpiece of the show is a beaded shirt featuring the artist’s drawing No Title (She must know). Made in 2010 and shown as part of his solo exhibition Hard in the Paint at David Zwirner New York that year, No Title (She must know) is an ink-and-gouache work on paper depicting a half-figure portrait of a young woman in a pose similar to da Vinci's Mona Lisa.

In Pettibon’s drawing, the winding paths and trees that make up the background of the Renaissance painting have been supplanted by handwritten messages or statements that describe the fabrication of pictorial meaning. From "The manifestation of womanhood" and "The making of madonna" to "The caricature of character" and "The idealization of idolatry," the words appear almost as satirical commentary on art historical language. Coupled with the solemn expression on the figure’s face, a sentence near the top of the work reads, "She must know that we are reading a fiction with her," signaling a departure from the enigmatic mood associated with the Mona Lisa.

Other works by Pettibon that inspired the designs include No Title (Take it from...) (2010), also presented in the exhibition Hard in the Paint, and a colored pencil-and-watercolor work on paper called No Title (I would be...) (2013). The latter is part of a body of work the artist created for his 2013 David Zwirner show To Wit, a title reflecting Pettibon’s preference for language that introduces the works without an antecedent—as an interrupted thought followed by something spontaneous: to wit, this body of work.

"I’ve loved Raymond Pettibon since I was a teenager," Jones said in an interview with Vogue on the collaboration, which debuted on January 19, 2019, in Paris. "His confidence of line is something that always really impressed me." Paper magazine opined that "The centerpiece of Jones’s collection was undoubtedly the collaboration with esteemed punk-era visual artist Raymond Pettibon."

David Zwirner is pleased to announce Raymond Pettibon: Noir, an upcoming Viewing Room of the artist’s drawings from the 1980s, many which have never been shown before. Film Noir will highlight a body of work that was made while Pettibon was living in Los Angeles, and will embrace the wide spectrum of high and low American culture. The Viewing Room will be curated by Andrea Cashman and will coincide with Frieze LA, launching publicly on February 8, 2019.

Cover image: The Dior Men Fall/Winter 2019–2020 collection, featuring an interpretation of Raymond Pettibon’s No title (She must know), 2010. Photo © Jason Lloyd-Evans

May 3—6, 2018

For Your Infotainment / Hudson and Feature Inc., the first-ever themed section at Frieze New York, pays tribute to a legendary gallerist and the artists he championed. Known only by his first name, Hudson (1950–2014) opened Feature Inc. in Chicago on April Fools’ Day in 1984; the gallery moved to New York four years later, where Hudson held early solo exhibitions by artists including Lisa Beck, Tom of Finland, Mike Kelley, Jeff Koons, Sherrie Levine, Charles Ray, and Raymond Pettibon. As part of this Frieze section, David Zwirner will present a solo booth of over one hundred early works by Pettibon made during the years of his close working relationship with Hudson in the 1980s and 1990s.

Curated by Matthew Higgs, director and chief curator at White Columns art space in New York, For Your Infotainment takes its name from the slogan on Feature Inc.’s compliments slip that reflects the unique style of a gallerist renowned for his steadfast attitude and renegade approach. Over his thirty-year career, Hudson earned a reputation for following his instincts and ignoring trends, exhibiting widely different kinds of work. As Higgs stated, "The artists who exhibited at Feature Inc. were, and remain, to use Lynne Cooke’s poignant term, ‘outliers’: artists who are hard to pigeon-hole and whose work actively resists easy categorization." A case in point is "the enigmatic, fantastically erudite artist Raymond Pettibon," as Peter Schjeldahl called him in a recent New Yorker review, whose work embraces a wide spectrum of American high and low culture, from the deviations of marginal youth to art history, literature, sports, religion, politics, and sexuality. Shown in thirteen exhibitions at Feature Inc. over the years, Pettibon’s work has come to occupy its own genre of potent and dynamic artistic commentary.

Together with solo presentations by seven other artists closely associated with Feature Inc. and a booth representing the recently launched non-profit Feature Hudson Foundation (FHF), For Your Infotainment honors a man remembered in The New York Times as "one of the most prescient, independent-minded and admired gallerists of his generation."

December 2–3, 2017

Gallery artists Carol Bove, Jeff Koons, and Raymond Pettibon participated in Who's Afraid of the New Now?, a series of public conversations between artists whose work has shaped the identity of the New Museum in New York as part of the museum's 40th anniversary celebrations.

The title of the series referenced a work by Allen Ruppersberg, whose first New York survey exhibition was held at the museum in 1985. The talks took place on December 2 and December 3, 2017.

The conversation between George Condo and Jeff Koons was covered in ARTNEWS, including sound bites from Koons about his debut exhibition in New York—"I wanted people to have a feeling of coming across something that was in some ways better prepared to survive than yourself"—and Condo's recollections of working for Andy Warhol's Factory.

Earlier in 2017, the New Museum presented the major solo exhibition Raymond Pettibon: A Pen of All Work, featuring over seven hundred drawings from the 1960s to the present and marking the artist's first museum survey in New York. In 2016, The Keeper featured a sculptural installation by Carol Bove created in response to the work of Carlo Scarpa. The New Museum also presented The New—Jeff Koons's first solo exhibition in New York—in 1980.


June 7–August 13, 2017

Raymond Pettibon. The Cloud of Misreading at Garage Museum of Contemporary Art in Moscow was the artist's first solo presentation in Russia. The exhibition brought together more than 300 works including ephemera and materials from Pettibon's personal archive. The exhibition was curated by Gary Carrion-Murayari and Massimiliano Gioni from the New Museum in New York, and was accompanied by a booklet containing Russian translations of some of the texts that appear on the artist’s works.

Read more: a profile of the artist in The New York Times

Raymond Pettibon: A Pen of All Work, the solo exhibition by "the enigmatic, fantastically erudite artist," as Peter Schjeldahl wrote in his review in The New Yorker, traveled to the Bonnefantenmuseum Maastricht in The Netherlands following its critically acclaimed debut at the New Museum in New York. Curated by New Museum curators Gary Carrion-Murayari and Massimiliano Gioni and featuring over 700 drawings from the 1960s to the present, A Pen of All Work was the largest presentation of Pettibon's work to date. A related exhibition also curated by Massimiliano Gioni and Gary Carrion-Murayari and entitled Raymond Pettibon. The Cloud of Misreading opened at the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art in Moscow in June.

The exhibition publication features contributions by Gary Carrion-Murayari and Massimiliano Gioni, who interviewed Pettibon, and Benjamin H.D. Buchloh, Sarah Lehrer-Graiwer, Frances Stark, and Lynne Tillman. Published by the New Museum | Phaidon

Read more: further reviews of A Pen of All Work in The New York Times and Time Out New York; a profile of the artist in The New York Times

A photograph of Marcel Dzama and Raymond Pettibon working on their collaborative mural, dated 2016.

Marcel Dzama and Raymond Pettibon began collaborating in the summer of 2015, creating works by swapping drawings in the "exquisite corpse" method, in which a partner is only given portions of an otherwise concealed drawing to work on. The drawings first appeared in Dzama / Pettibon, a zine published to coincide with Printed Matter's 2015 New York Art Book Fair at MoMA PS1. Produced in an edition of 200, the zine sold out on the first day of the fair.

An expanded second edition of the zine was later published for Forgetting the Hand, an exhibition of the artists' collaborative works at David Zwirner in New York. The second edition included 20 additional drawings and a text by poet Andrew Durbin. The collaboration continued as Dzama and Pettibon created works for the exhibition Let us compare mythologies, which was on view at the London gallery later in 2016.

In 2016, the Deichtorhallen Hamburg - Sammlung Falckenberg presented Homo Americanus, a major survey of Pettibon's work. The exhibition encompassed over 700 drawings from every part of Pettibon's career, the majority of which had never been shown before.

David Zwirner Books published the exhibition catalogue in collaboration with the museum. The 692-page volume includes texts by exhibition curator Ulrich Loock, Raymond Pettibon himself, and Lucas Zwirner. Arranged thematically in 32 chapters, the catalogue charts the development of important themes in Pettibon's work, such as hearts, Gumby, trains, baseball, surfers, and more.

The Artist Project is an online series produced by The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York which gives artists the opportunity to respond to the museum's encyclopedic collection. The Met invited Raymond Pettibon to participate in the third season of the project. In the video, he chose to discuss works by Joseph Mallord William Turner, saying: “I like art where you can see the struggle in making the work.”

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