This print from John Baldessari’s “Hegel’s Cellar” portfolio juxtaposes two scenes. At top, a bloodied corpse, possibly from a crime scene photograph, contrasts with a serene beachside shot of a man reclining at the beach, while a subtle line of red added along the lower man’s body accentuates an association between the pair. The similar poses yet wildly differing contexts unleash a range of meaning and enliven the work with a startling power.

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About John Baldessari

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It is hard to characterize John Baldessari's (American, b. 1931) varied practice—which includes photomontage, artist’s books, prints, paintings, film, performance, and installation—except through his approach of good-humored irreverence. Baldessari is commonly associated with Conceptual or Minimalist art, though he has called this characterization “a little bit boring.” His two-dimensional works often incorporate found images, composed in layers or presented as distinct pieces with an element of surprise, like a brightly colored geometric shape in the place of a face or a starkly printed sardonic caption.

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Two Figures (One with Shadow) (from the Hegel’s Cellar portfolio), 1986
Lot Number 4
Etching with aquatint on Rives BFK paper
20.5 x 20 in (52.07 x 50.8 cm)
Edition of 35
Signed and numbered in pencil on verso

Online bidding for this work ended on February 20, 2018 at 1:03pm ET.

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John Baldessari
Two Figures (One with Shadow) (from the Hegel’s Cellar portfolio)
  • Dimensions
    20.5 x 20 in (52.07 x 50.8 cm)