From Black Flag to the Venice Biennial: Raymond Pettibon at Barbara Gladstone (Brussels)

Sometimes gallery openings do tell you a lot. Take last Thursday for instance, at Barbara Gladstone (Brussels). Quite a few people had brought old vinyl records, hoping to get them signed by the artist. From which you could gather that the guy showing his work at the gallery is some sort of hero outside the art world too. Then there was that bunch of art students outside, coolly sipping their glass of wine and smoking their cigarette. So: even if the artist is some sort of old school hero, he’s still worth to be checked out by that younger generation too. And thirdly: upstairs in the gallery collectors and other gallery owners were quickly and smilingly making their rounds. Which could tell you that the artist still has quite some name and fame in the art world today. And why were they here? They were all gathered at Barbara Gladstone to see new work by the American artist Raymond Pettibon (52). He used to be closely associated with the legendary punk band Black Flag (and has designed the covers of Sonic Youth ‘s Goo and Foo Fighter ‘s One by one) but has since then made a name for himself as an artist with works on paper combining elements from American iconography, comic strips, advertising and even William Blake. Pettibon is the recipient of numerous awards and prizes, participated in Documenta XI (2002), several Whitney Biennials and the Venice Biennial (2007) and will participate in this year’s Liverpool Biennial. So, yes, even if his art might not be your thing: worth checking out, definitely. (Through July 10; Tuesday-Friday 10am-6pm, Saturday 12pm-6pm; info and more images here.)


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