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Sam McKinniss
team (bungalow), Venice, California
Recommendation by Jody Zellen


Sam McKinniss, “Joan,” 2017, oil and acrylic on canvas


Sam McKinniss' nine beautifully painted, intimately scaled, representational works are reminiscent of paintings by Elizabeth Peyton and Karen Kilimnik, who similarly appropriate imagery from popular culture. The works represent a narrative of innocence and destruction. McKinniss culls his imagery of singers, authors, movie stars and musicians from myriad photographic and video sources. They are transformed into vivid depictions that are immediately recognizable.

Included in the exhibition, entitled "Daisy Chain," are renderings of Joan Didion, JonBenet Ramsey, Whitney Houston and Beck, as well as a painting of a baby lamb and a Death Valley sunset. McKinniss is specific about his choices. For example, the image of Beck comes from a video still created by artist Jeremy Blake who, like Beck was identified with the Church of Scientology. The image of Whitney Houston is entitled "Star Spangled Banner (Whitney)" and comes from a cropped image of her singing at the 1991 Superbowl. The daisy chain of associations is at the heart of this endeavor.

team (bungalow)

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