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Ken Price


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Essay by Jean-Pierre Criqui

Drawing was always a central component of Ken Price’s art: “For me drawing is really flexible, and I use it in different ways. It’s my way of developing ideas.” Many of Price's 1960s works on paper explore forms and colors for his abstract sculptures, while others envision impossible objects, like a cup with a leaping frog or a cavorting nude for a handle. The pictorial spaces these objects inhabit are more fully realized in his works from the late 1960s and early 1970s, and subsequent drawings conjure for them an entire world. A semi-fictionalized Los Angeles, complete with clogged freeways and palm-studded skylines, is the star of several drawings from the 1990s, while in the 2000s, when Price and his family moved permanently to New Mexico, wilder landscapes began to appear, filled with erupting volcanoes, cyclonic skies, and turbulent seas.

Featuring 78 works on paper — all reproduced here for the first time, many at actual size — Ken Price Drawings is the largest book ever published on the subject. Technical innovations like five-color printing capture the drawings in all their wayward vitality. As French art historian Jean-Pierre Criqui writes in the essay, "The tutelary power of drawing was, for Price, clad in an aura both transgressive and magical."

100 pages
90 images
14 1/2 x 11 1/2 inches; 37 x 29 cm

ISBN 978-1-880146-99-6