George Condo is recognized as being one of America’s most influential living artists best known for his signature brand of figuration which emphasizes fractured faces and aggressive imagery.
Condo studied art history and music theory at the University of Massachusetts in Lowell. After working in Andy Warhol’s Factory, he decamped to Paris in 1985 for a decade and resettled in Manhattan in 1995: “I felt I had to come back to New York with a statement that would stand up against Andy Warhol’s soup cans. And the irony was that it turned out to be Old Master painting”. Condo experimented with the concept he called Artificial Realism – the realistic representation of that which is artificial.
Condo’s highly original and distinctive body of work is consistently drawn upon art historical traditions and genres, to hold a mirror up to contemporary social norms and reflect American culture of his time.
His work daringly fused the sensibilities of European Old Master painting blending their imagery and techniques with aesthetics that echo “Avignonin naiset” by Pablo Picasso, “Studies from human body” by Francis Bacon and “Woman” figures by Willem de Kooning with references to popular American culture, including Playboy magazine, comics, and cartoons. Condo is widely recognized as the ‘missing link’ that connects the figurative tradition started by Old Masters to his contemporaries, John Currin, Glenn Brown, Dana Schutz, and others.
“I describe what I do as psychological Cubism,” – Condo’s art can be viewed as a multilayered experience that brings the viewer in touch with a psychological exploration of human nature. Through the process of transformation involving art historical language and an actualization of philosophical content, Condo’s paintings create a visible window into the world we live in.