RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 26
RAYMOND PETTIBON
(b. 1957)
No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993

US$ 500,000 - 800,000
£ 370,000 - 590,000
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957)
No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993

signed 'Raymond Pettibon'
acrylic on Plexiglas, double-sided

48 x 96 in.
121.9 x 243.8 cm.

This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    Robert Berman Gallery, Santa Monica (acquired in 1993)
    Acquired directly from the above by the present owner


    No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave)was created during an exceptionally creative period in Raymond Pettibon's career. The early 1990s was a time of extraordinary experimentation for the artist while he found his mature artistic style and was bolstered by enormous critical success. Absolutely unique in Pettibon's oeuvre, this painting on Plexiglas encompasses the excitement and drama of Pettibon's iconic surf imagery with the energy, expression, and passion of an artist at the height of his powers.

    Surfers have loomed large in Pettibon's lexicon of imagery, though he was not a surfer himself. Pettibon grew up in California beach cities and lived in the Venice neighborhood of Los Angeles where there was a thriving surf community. He first started depicting surfers in the mid-1980s and under his keen, teasing exploration, they have become a central and compelling metaphor in his work for real lived contemporary experience. Surfers like the one seen in the present lot slice through Pettibon's body of work on a knife's edge of confidence and serenity in the face of nature's titanic uncontrollable forces. They are both an allegory for the human condition and an antidote to the wry cynicism of much of Pettibon's other work. Although the undercurrent of possible, even eminent, crushing disaster exists when viewing the surfer glide across a vast swell, Pettibon does not dwell on that dramatic potential. Rather, this surfer is shown in the transcendently optimistic, almost peaceful moment of mastery as he moves confidently amidst the wave's vast expanse. With accomplished draftsmanship and expert skill, Pettibon depicts the full gamut of emotion in his surfers; the joy and hope of catching the wave as well as the solitude of a man dwarfed by nature's magnificent might, alone and at the mercy of dangerous chaos should his balance waver.

    This extraordinary double-sided work combines Pettibon's deft and energetic hand with the transparency of the Plexiglas support to create an immediacy mirroring a surfer's own experience on the enormous wave. The subject is caught in the moment of extasy as the surfer finds purchase on one of nature's mightiest forces. When lit, the shadows projected by No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave) create an immersive, cinematic environment, enveloping the space in a dynamic tranquility, a seeming contradiction that only an artist as genuine and skilled as Pettibon could capture so succinctly and so powerfully. Coming to auction for the first time, this unique, incredibly important painting has not been exhibited publicly since its creation.

    The use of Plexiglas as a painting support harkens back to Hans Namuth's landmark film of Jackson Pollack creating a drip painting on glass above the camera. The film captured Pollock at the height of his career and similarly No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave) was created at a pivotal moment in Pettibon's artistic trajectory. The painting was executed a year after Pettibon's stunning installation in Paul Schimmel's legendary Helter Skelter: L.A. Art in the 1990s exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles and the same year that his work was included for the first time in the hugely influential Whitney Biennial. In another parallel of art historical significance, a film of Pettibon creating this outstanding work was created at the time and a specially edited version of this extraordinary moment will be provided to the successful bidder.

    Pettibon's work has been widely exhibited since the 1980s. In addition to the Whitney Biennial, his work has been included in the Venice Biennale and documenta XI and was the subject of a major traveling retrospective organized by the New Museum, New York in 2017. Works by the artist are held in major museum collections including the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin; Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami; The Israel Museum, Jerusalem; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Tate Gallery, London; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. He was awarded the Whitney Biennial Bucksbaum Award in 2004 and the Oskar Kokoschka Prize in 2010. Pettibon currently lives and works in New York.
Contacts
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
RAYMOND PETTIBON (b. 1957) No Title (Surfer in the Great Wave), 1993 (This work is accompanied by a video of Raymond Pettibon creating the present lot.)
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Arms & Armor, Coins and Medals, Motor Cars, Motorcycles, Wine & Whisky

27.5% on the first $12,500 of the hammer price;
25% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of $12,500 up to and including $600,000;
20% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of $600,000 up to and including $6,000,000;
and 14.5% of the hammer price of any amounts in excess of $6,000,000.

Payment Notices

Payment for purchases may be made in or by (a) cash, (b) cashier's check or money order, (c) personal check with approved credit drawn on a U.S. bank, (d) wire transfer or other immediate bank transfer, or (e) Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover credit, charge or debit card for returning clients only. Please note that the amount of cash notes and cash equivalents that can be accepted from a given purchaser may be limited.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

App