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Barry McGee (American, born 1966)
signed, titled and dated 1996 on the reverse
acrylic on metal printer's tray
13 1/8 by 9 1/16 in.
33.3 by 23 cm.
Pirovino Projex, Santa Monica
San Francisco based artist Barry McGee is a major player in the city's artistic subculture. He works on the streets under the moniker TWIST, but exhibits in galleries across the world under his own name, creating two distinct styles which co-exist in perfect harmony. His alcohol-soaked imagery recalls the work of Bukowski or the Beat generation, presenting us with portraits of glum-faced outsiders, their baggy eyes and blank expressions implying that they are no poster-boys of the American dream. Despite the artist's pessimistic take on urban existence, the inherent comedy of these faces imbues them with a relentless charm. In 2001 his work was included in the Venice Biennale, and since then he has been honored with solo shows in museums in both Japan and the UK.