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Raymond Pettibon
No Title (Safe he called…)

June 3 – July 1, 2013
Billboard next to the High Line at 18th Street and 10th Avenue

Legendary artist Raymond Pettibon has been composing an extensive body of works that include drawings which investigate multifaceted aspects of American culture, touching upon issues of religion, politics, sexuality, literature, and sport. Pettibon emerged in the late 1970s in the underground music scene of Los Angeles, where he became known for do-it-yourself posters, fanzines, and album covers for punk-rock bands like Black Flag and Sonic Youth. Since then, he has been using the language of comics and caricature to sketch a portrait of America through its deepest feelings and desires.

For the High Line, Pettibon presents No Title (Safe he called…), 2010, a work from his famous series of baseball drawings. With dense strokes and expressionistic lines, Pettibon conveys the movement and dynamism of a game between the Boston Red Sox and the Brooklyn Dodgers. The drawing evokes a longstanding history well-known to baseball fans: the departure of the Dodgers from Brooklyn to Los Angeles. Pettibon alludes to an East Coast-West Coast feud throughout the drawing: on the left he writes “Moses,” a reference to both Robert Moses, the New York City power broker who played a major role in the Dodgers move from Brooklyn to L.A., and the biblical Moses, who led his people on an exodus to the promised land. “Jackie” refers to Jackie Robinson, the first African American to play in the Major League, while “Where Brooklyn at?” references the chant from the famous freestyle rap battle between East Coast rapper Notorious B.I.G. and West Coast rapper Tupac Shakur.

Photos by Timothy Schenck. 

Raymond Pettibon

Raymond Pettibon’s (b. 1957, Arizona) work embraces a wide spectrum of American “high” and “low” culture. Upcoming solo exhibitions include David Zwirner, New York (September 2013). Selected solo exhibitions include Kunstmuseum Luzern, Lucerne, Switzerland (2012); Kestnergesellschaft, Hanover (2007); Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna (2006); Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Málaga, Málaga, Spain (2006); Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, La Jolla, California (2005); and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2005). In 1998, he had his first major American museum presentation, organized by The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago in collaboration with the Philadelphia Museum of Art, which traveled to The Drawing Center, New York, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Major international group exhibitions and biennials include the Liverpool Biennial, England (2010); SITE Santa Fe, New Mexico (2010 and 2004); the Venice Biennale, Venice (2007 and 1999); the Whitney Biennial, New York (2004, 1997, 1993, and 1991); and Documenta XI, Kassel, Germany (2002).


High Line Art is presented by Friends of the High Line and the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. High Line Art is made possible by Donald R. Mullen, Jr. and The Brown Foundation, Inc. of Houston, and Vital Projects Fund, Inc. High Line Art is supported, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. In-kind support provided by Maharam.

Space for High Line Billboard is donated by

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