Richard Phillips: Negation of the Universe


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The first monograph on New York–based contemporary artist Richard Phillips, best known for his large-scale paintings that are ultracool in execution and very hot in effect. Richard Phillips’s hyperrealistic oil paintings embody themes as broad as power, politics, celebrity, fashion, ideology, beauty, and sex, and pose questions about the status of painting today: Does the medium remain valid, or has it become a historical pastime? Pornography, propaganda, advertising, entertainment, fashion—Phillips incorporates material from a range of sources to confront what is at the core of contemporary image making, from the power of celebrity branding to complicity between viewer and viewed. The book’s exploitative design strategy celebrates the commercial and fashion alliances of the artist’s practice, while revealing the complex politics behind the imagery the artist chooses to paint.


Richard Phillips exhibits his work internationally. He is represented in the Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Miami; Tate Modern, London; and the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands. Marcus Steinweg is a professor at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste Braunschweig. Beatrix Ruf is director of the Kunsthalle Zurich.

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