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Using the potency of advertising media, Kelley Walker appropriates iconic cultural images and digitally alters them to highlight underlying issues of politics and consumerism. He often employs a “copy, cut, and reprint” technique via inkjet printing and screenprinting. As the artist has stated: “I am thinking of printed matter as raw material with traces of history. The logo has an aura of propaganda that interests me.”
In Lee Radziwill Interview March 1975, one of Walker’s so-called brick paintings, the text and images are taken from an old issue of Interview magazine in which pop artist Andy Warhol and his associate Fred Hughes interviewed Lee Radziwill (an American socialite and younger sister of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis). After printing various pages from the March 1975 issue of the magazine onto canvas, Walker added images of white bricks, disrupting, distancing, and obscuring the original source. The fragmented magazine content becomes the “mortar” that is laced throughout the composition, becoming a subtle anchor of meaning.
Walker’s use of appropriation and investigation of the everyday in Lee Radziwill Interview March 1975 opens a dialogue with works by a number of other artists in the ICA/Boston collection, such as Andy Warhol, Dara Birnbaum, and a younger generation that includes Shannon Ebner, Leslie Hewitt, Klara Lidén, and Sara VanDerBeek.
Promised gift of Fotene Demoulas and Tom Coté