Girlfriends, colored hoods and a cannibal joke: Richard Prince at Almine Rech (Brussels)

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Last time one of Richard Prince’s pictures was shown in Brussels (in October 2009), it made headlines everywhere: his ‘version’ of a picture of a naked Brooke Shields was just banned at an exhibition at the Tate in London, whereas the Botanique received no complaints at all for the same picture (article here). These days the art world is once again talking about Richard Prince, because of an important copyright lawsuit (NYT article here). So let’s just say: even though Prince’s art might not be your thing, his first solo exhibition The Fug (a reference to sixties band The Fugs) at Almine Rech Gallery (Brussels, through November 5) is a show that deserves your attention. Prince is often pinned down by just one word: appropriation. One of Belgian artist Luc Tuymans’ favourite words too. ‘Borrowing’ images and making them yours, by adapting them in one way or the other. At Almine Rech you’ll discover a couple of examples of the series Prince is known for: his black and white Joke paintings, his Girlfriends, and his sculptural Hoods. Funny detail: if you’ve been to Needcompany’s The Art of Entertainment, then you will notice that they’ve used the same cannibal joke Prince has.

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