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New Museum Organizes First Elizabeth Peyton Survey and International Tour of Over 100 Works
Elizabeth Peyton, Keith (From Gimme Shelter) 2004 Oil on board 10 x 12 in 25.4 x 20.5 cm. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, purchased with funds by the International Director’s Council and Executive Committee Members.
NEW YORK, NY.- The New Museum announces today that it will present the first survey of Elizabeth Peyton’s work, including paintings, drawings, and prints. “Live Forever: Elizabeth Peyton” premieres at the New Museum and will be on view from October 8, 2008 through January 11, 2009, and will then travel to the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis; the Whitechapel Art Gallery in London; and the Bonnefantenmuseum, in Maastricht, the Netherlands. The survey will include more than 100 works made over the past fifteen years. Peyton’s oeuvre can be read in chapters, each of which feature portraits of friends, family, personal heroes, and fleeting passions. “Live Forever: Elizabeth Peyton” will offer a visual biography of the artist, and at the same time create a snapshot of the popular culture of the past decade.

From her earliest portraits of musicians like Kurt Cobain, Liam Gallagher, and Jarvis Cocker to more recent paintings featuring friends and figures from the worlds of art, fashion, cinema, and politics including Rirkrit Tiravanija, Matthew
Barney, and Marc Jacobs, Elizabeth Peyton’s body of work presents a chronicle of America at the end of the last century.

A painter of modern life, Peyton’s small, jewel-like portraits are also intensely empathetic, intimate, and even personal. Together, her works capture an artistic zeitgeist that reflects the cultural climate of the late-twentieth and early-twentyfirst centuries.

Peyton emerged as a vanguard voice in the return to narrative figuration in contemporary painting in the 1990s, and is among a small group of artists to develop a peculiar hybrid of realism and conceptualism. Although her paintings
reference nineteenth-century modernist painting—from Eduard Manet to John Singer Sargent—Peyton processes these masters through an intimate understanding of twentieth-century artists such as David Hockney, Alex Katz, and above all, Andy Warhol. Like Warhol, Peyton’s art is at the service of the culture it captures. A brilliant colorist with a razor-sharp graphic sense, her paintings are enormously seductive in form and content, celebrating the aesthetics of youth, fame, and creative genius. They are also testaments to Peyton’s deeper passion for beauty in all its forms—from the elevated to the everyday. Ultimately, Peyton’s paintings are evidence of a dedication to the creation of a new kind of popular art. Steeped in history, her work aspires to bridge the gap between art and life.

The exhibition is organized by Laura Hoptman, Kraus Family Senior Curator at the New Museum.





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