Search for over 80 million sold items in our price database

Oscillate Wildly (after ‘Autumnal Cannibalism’ 1936 by Salvador Dalí), 1999 – Glenn Brown
Sold

About the item

Glenn Brown\nOscillate Wildly (after ‘Autumnal Cannibalism’ 1936 by Salvador Dalí)\n1999\nBy kind permission of the Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation, Spain oil on linen\n175.5 x 391.9 cm. (69 1/8 x 154 1/4 in.)\nSigned, titled and dated 'Glenn Brown 1998-9 'Oscillate Wildly'' on the reverse.
US
NY, US
US

year

1999

notes

'To make something up from scratch is nonsensical. Images are alanguage. It’s impossible to make a painting that is not borrowed —even the images in your dreams refer to reality.' GLENN BROWN'Dalí’s paintings are terrible, tacky, vulgar, gruesome,full of adolescent self-loathing. That’s why I like them.' GLENN BROWNStemming out of the Young British Artists of the early nineties, Turner Prize nominated Glenn Brown is recognized as one of the foremost painters of his generation. Like many of his contemporaries, Chris Ofli and Peter Doig, Brown negotiates the reception, transmission and over saturation of imagery in the contemporary landscape; through his paintings, Brown creates a dialogue between historical methodologies and contemporary concerns. Simultaneously appropriating and paying homage to artworks by canonical figures such as Delacroix, Rembrant, Fragonard, Salvador Dali and Frank Auerbach, among others, Brown is perhaps best known for his appropriation of iconic works of art as well as his exploration of sub-genres (or 'marginal art') such as early science-fiction landscapes, which, in Brown’s hands evoke the cosmic sublime found in paintings by John Martin and J.M.W. Turner.Recreating familiar subject matter, the artist employs a haunting and masterful dexterity, often depicting the familiar in what appears to be impressionist swirls of impasto yet retaining a strikingly smooth and deliberately flat surface. In this way, Brown’s practice successfully contradicts its references through this effective manipulation, modifying and exaggerating the scale and color palette of his paintings to create a distinctive disparity between original and simulacra. Brown will often source his appropriated material from reproductions found in exhibition catalogues or online, scanning the image, manipulating color and distorting form with a computer program until the source image reflects the desired qualities. Glenn Brown will then manipulate the image to take on characteristics of yet another artwork by a different artist, citing his secondary source in the size or color palette of his final painting. Of course, using reproduced images of artworks implies that the artist’s sources are already found in a mediated state: 'I pick images that have something missing […] There’s a purposeful impoverishment in living via secondhand information in a world of videos, computers, films.' (Glenn Brown in S. Kent, 'Putrid Beauty', BlouinArtinfo, May 14, 2009)Underscoring the artist’s complex oeuvre, Glenn Brown’s practice can be described as painterly abstraction within the tradition of appropriation, surrealism and photorealism, magnificently exemplified in the present lot, Oscillate Wildly (after ‘Autumnal Cannibalism’ 1936 by Salvador Dalí), 1999. This particular painting, exhibited at the Tate Liverpool during Glenn Brown’s eponymous retrospective in 2009, was installed in the same room as his transcendent science-fiction landscape Jesus, The Living Dead (after Adolf Schaller), 1997-98, as well as his other towering Dali-inspired painting, Dali-Christ (after Soft Construction with Boiled Beans: Premonition of Civil War 1936 by Salvador Dali), 1992. These two genres represent the artist’s earlier desire to communicate directly with the source material, allowing for organic variants from the original sources depending on the quality of his source material and the manner in which he filtered it. Here, Brown’s painting is indexical to the original, however, abstracted in its own way. In the present lot we find a triumphant homage to Salvador Dali’s Autumnal Cannibalism, 1936, a surrealist landscape depicting two interconnected figures in the foreground. The amorphous pair appears enraptured as they scoop, slice and devour each other with disquieting tenderness and civility.Growing out of the seemingly deserted plane, the two elegantly elongated figures are locked in an all-consuming embrace, poised upon a chest of drawers surrounded by fragments of decomposing flesh and peeled fruit. Dali’s version is constructed by warm and cool tones; burnt umber, burnt sienna and vermillion are balanced with greyish tones of colbalt blue and amber. The background depicts Empordà, the region of Catalonia where Dali was born, which was divided into two districts during the Spanish Civil war; the artist emphasizes this division in his squared composition. One half of the scenic space is devoted to a landscape with mountain range, punctuated by a red soil, a white edifice and small village nested at the foot a large dark mountain with looming cloud overhead; the other half of the composition is comprised of a barren dessert and a large mountainous mass. In this way, the figures emerging from the duality of this landscape reference the complicity of destruction in warfare as much as they suggest voracious consumption.In Brown’s interpretation, the elegance and seductive quality of the subject matter is amplified and elongated, clearly belying the artist’s technical sophistication is a process that revitalizes the conventions of even the most masterful of the avant-garde. Brown effectively suggests a similar kind of anthropophagy to that found in Autumnal Cannibalism; in a romantic gesture he refers to the consumption of images, art history, style and technique. Indeed, Brown’s oeuvre is distinguished by the consumption and “resurrection not only of genres, artists and images but also of outmoded techniques and modes of representation. He establishes a complex system of references around surface and flatness, touch and gesture, superficiality and profundity.” (C. Grunenberg, “Capability Brown: Spectacles of Hyperrealism, the Panorama and Abject Horror in the Paining of Glenn Brown,” Glenn Brown, Tate Publishing, 2009, p.16). Practicing within the lineage of Photorealism, what Brown culls from this genre as well as the genre’s Surrealist forbearers is the desire to manifest reality through the mediated image, staging the detailed hyper-real (or surreal) against the two-dimensional plane. However, Brown veers away from traditional Photorealist subject matter. Here, the referent to the hyper-real is in fact the referent to the original source-the artwork as object as opposed to the original subject matter of the artwork. In this way, the artist utilizes the language of photographic representation to manifest Dali’s subject matter.In Oscillate Wildly (after Autumnal Cannibalism 1936 by Salvador Dalí), 1999, Brown subdues the composition through the use of grey-scale, mirrors the image and doubles the painting in size only to stretch the horizontal plane to a monumental 12 feet, revealing a panoramic vista, or rather, a cinematic spectacle. Compressing and stretching out the elements found in Dali’s painting, Brown also takes his own liberties, allowing the apple at the centre of the composition to hover ever so slightly above the figure’s head, elaborating upon the landscape with its white edifice and rolling mountains, creating graceful curling lines in the outstretching cloud. Indeed, Oscillate Wildly succeeds in suspending Dali’s dream-like environment while creating a landscape that invites the viewer’s projections. It is within this manipulation that Brown permits the rediscovery of Dali’s original, in all its haunting abject glory, all the while quoting a secondary source – found in the cinematic scope of Picasso’s epic painting, Guernica, 1937. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of Brown’s employment of this secondary source is that it uses abstraction to reference the violence and chaos of the physical world, referring to the horrific bombing of the Basque country village during the Spanish civil war, while Dali’s Autumnal Cannibalism employs a realistic style to depict a fragmented and fractured psychological space. Picasso’s Guernica and Dali’s Autumnal Cannibalism both rely on allegory and certainly both refer to the ravages of war, however, Dali is clearly involved with an intimate and malleable narrative space, evoking the endless interior landscape of sub-consciousness. Picasso, however, has chosen specific forms, symbols and narrative rhythm in a structured space to underscore a defining moment.Glenn Brown fuses the fragmentation visible in both Dali and Picasso’s works, not necessarily creating a whole but creating an uncanny panoramic view of excess, simultaneously reflecting abject and extravagant worlds in flux. In this way, the title of Brown’s piece is quite apt, Oscillate Wildly (after Autumnal Cannibalism 1936 by Salvador Dalí), 1999, supports the vacillation between the “real” and the mediated, the original and simulacra. To oscillate between the digital image, printed image and painted image means to engage with mechanical reproduction and effectively destabilize the notion of aura associated with original works of art. All of these negotiations seem to compel Glenn Brown, noting that '[n]othing has yet come about that can compare with [painting] as a translation of that human desire to make marks, to make two-dimensional images of things or two-dimensional surfaces with color and shape. I love computer technology; I love Photoshop and all of the possibilities of manipulation that it gives you to play with. But the final product from the computer is always very lackluster. Not that I would ever do without it. […] I have a kind of healthy cynicism about what it is to look at the world, to be in a modern world surrounded by images.' (L. Macritchie, 'Interview: Glenn Brown,'Art in America, April 2009).

title

Oscillate Wildly (after ‘Autumnal Cannibalism’ 1936 by Salvador Dalí)

medium

By kind permission of the Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation, Spain oil on linen

signed

Signed, titled and dated 'Glenn Brown 1998-9 'Oscillate Wildly'' on the reverse.

creator

Glenn Brown

condition

The canvas and stretcher are in good condition; the canvas is supported by an eight-member stretcher and enclosed by foamcore on the reverse. There are two areas of restoration to the lower left quadrant, visible only in the raking light (one is 'L' shaped measuring approximately 7x4cm; the second is approximately 4cm long). Under UV light, the retouching shows as very neatly confined to the area of the tears. There are very minor scuffs in places towards the edges and corners and a very minor dent centrally to the upper edge, only visible under close inspection. Otherwise, there are no apparent condition issues with this work.

exhibited

London, Tate Britain, Turner Prize 2000, 25 October 2000 – 14 January 2001London, Serpentine Gallery, Glenn Brown, 24 September – 7 November 2004Tate liverpool, Glenn Brown: Living Vicariously, 20 February - 10 May 2009;then travelled to Turin, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, (28 May – 4October 2009), Budapest, Ludwig Múzeum (6 February - 11 April 2010)

dimensions

175.5 x 391.9 cm. (69 1/8 x 154 1/4 in.)

literature

Glenn Brown, Exh. Cat., Tate Liverpool, 2009, pp. 62-65 (illustrated)

provenance

Patrick Painter Gallery, Los Angeles


*Note: The price is not recalculated to the current value. It refers to the actual final price at the time the item was sold.

*Note: The price is not recalculated to the current value. It refers to the actual final price at the time the item was sold.


Advert
Advert

Sold items

No. 21 (Red, Brown, Black and Orange)
Sold

No. 21 (Red, Brown, Black and Orange)

Realized Price
44,965,000 USD

Untitled (Pollo Frito)
Sold

Untitled (Pollo Frito)

Realized Price
25,701,500 USD

23.05.64
Sold

23.05.64

Realized Price
11,478,641 USD

No. 18 (Brown and Black on Plum)
Sold

No. 18 (Brown and Black on Plum)

Realized Price
9,602,500 USD

Feet Don't Fail Me Now
Sold

Feet Don't Fail Me Now

Realized Price
8,879,400 USD

Withdrawn

Untitled (Plum and Dark Brown)

Realized Price
7,642,500 USD

Sold

Spectre du soir sur la plage

Realized Price
6,802,000 USD

Sold

Suddenly Last Summer

Realized Price
6,776,200 USD

Sold

Brown and Blacks in Reds

Realized Price
6,727,500 USD