SOURCE: Lance Armstrong Foundation

November 24, 2009 11:46 ET

For Sale: Contemporary Art by Premier Talent to Benefit the LIVESTRONG® Global Cancer Campaign

Nike's STAGES Exhibition Holds Its Finale at Art Basel Miami Beach, Dec. 4-6; Artists Inspired by Lance Armstrong and Works Reflect Themes of Cancer, Cycling and Pop Culture

AUSTIN, TX--(Marketwire - November 24, 2009) - STAGES, the global art exhibition produced by Nike and dedicated to raising awareness for the LIVESTRONG Global Cancer Campaign, will have its finale at the most important art show in the United States, Art Basel Miami Beach, Dec. 4-6, in Miami, Florida. STAGES features 14 works of art for sale by premier artistic talent including Cai Guo-Qiang, the Clayton Brothers, Dzine, Futura, Tomoo Gokita, Geoff McFetridge, Erik Parker, Raymond Pettibon, Lari Pittman, Richard Prince, JR, Tom Sachs and Dustin Yellin. The exhibition is at O.H.W.O.W. supported by Deitch Projects (888 Biscayne Blvd.). All proceeds benefit LIVESTRONG.

Inspired by Lance Armstrong, LIVESTRONG founder and chairman, cancer survivor and champion cyclist, STAGES premiered at the Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin in Paris during the 2009 Tour de France, then traveled to New York, where it was exhibited at Deitch Projects, Oct. 31-Nov. 21. The entire exhibition includes 27 participating artists who designed works to engage the creative community in a new visual dialogue about the global cancer burden. STAGES unites the world of art, philanthropy and sport to support the fight against cancer and the 28 million cancer survivors around the globe.

"With cancer projected to become the leading cause of death worldwide by 2010, the timing of this large-scale global exhibition is especially significant in helping LIVESTRONG elevate its urgent message that cancer needs to become a global priority now," said Armstrong. "Nike is an extraordinary example of how corporate social responsibility can change the world for the better and its contribution to our cause is phenomenal."


Cai Guo-Qiang
"Tree with Yellow Blossoms"
Gunpowder on paper, mounted on wood as a four-panel folding screen, 230cm x

Cai's reputation as one of the foremost exponents of contemporary Chinese art is rooted in the innovative approaches he has brought to painting, sculpture and event-based artworks while incorporating materials and symbols that refer to his specific cultural heritage. In "Tree with Yellow Blossoms," Cai explains, "I used gunpowder to create a large, thriving tree with yellow flowers in full bloom. It symbolizes the endless cycle of life and growth and its power to put forth new life and hope." His method of "drawing" with gunpowder and producing precisely choreographed "explosion events" with fireworks highlights the importance of transformation as a physical, political and intellectual capacity for Cai. He is represented by Cai Studios, NYC.

Clayton Brothers
"Always Alive"
Mixed media on canvas, 213cm x 213cm.

Los Angeles-based brothers-in-arms Rob and Christian Clayton work together in the kind of tightly orchestrated way that can only result from sharing a blood bond. The art-making pair work in seamless unison to channel a collaborative vision deeply rooted in the visual traditions of folk and outsider art, and tempered by the sensibilities of punk, German expressionism and the genuine naiveté of children's art. Process is key to the inseparable childhood companions who view their joint art studio as yet another "shared bedroom," and they place a premium on the tandem experience of constructing their dense imagery. Heavy use of symbolic elements as allegorical cues is a constant theme, and color is like lifeblood to the work. In "Always Alive," the brothers took a maiden voyage deep into the exploration of the color yellow and its association with hope and healing. The process of creating this work required building up layers, then stripping away and erasing elements before going back in to build up new graphic layers, mimicking the healing Armstrong experienced during his own battle with cancer. Rob and Christian teach at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California and are represented by Patrick Painter in Los Angeles and Apama Mackey in Houston, Texas.

"The Tipping Point"
Lowrider bicycle (24kt gold plating, 23kt gold leaf, custom engraving,
chrome, nickel plating, enamel paint, automotive paint, suede,
Swarovski crystals, neon, rubber, iPod/audio speakers and mirror), 117cm x
183cm x 66cm.

Chicago-based Dzine has an acknowledged penchant for embellishment and produces objects that command attention while toying with elements of irony, beauty and sincere tribute simultaneously. He continues to introduce a fresh new language that is finding its place in our contemporary art discourse. In "The Tipping Point," Dzine has created a playful response to Armstrong's comment, "It's not about the bike," by producing a custom two-wheeler so baroque that it may stand as the ultimate tribute to the bike in general. The ubiquitous gold plating that embellishes nearly every surface is an overt homage to LIVESTRONG yellow. Dzine is represented by Deitch Projects, New York; SCAI the Bathhouse, Tokyo and Leeahn Gallery, South Korea.

"Les Sept Etoiles"
Spraypaint on canvas, 214cm x 46cm.

Born Leonard McGurr, the enigmatic young artist quickly adopted the telling nom de guerre of Futura 2000 as the graffiti movement exploded in train yards throughout the five boroughs in the 1970s, when he cut his teeth alongside the nascent legends of the day. Coming to prominence during the cultural renaissance of New York City in the 1980s, Futura became one of the foremost artistic innovators of the era at a time when a premium was placed on originality above all else. A lifelong cycling enthusiast who once worked as a Manhattan bike messenger, Futura customized two bikes with his designs in Armstrong's 2005 Tour de France victory and has provided design innovation on Nike's LIVESTRONG collection. In "Les Sept Etoiles," the far left border closely resembles a long strip of caution tape with seven black notches -- one for each of Armstrong's seven consecutive Tour de France wins between 1999-2005. The bright yellow background represents the LIVESTRONG cause while the countless black speckles symbolize the enormous population of people affected by cancer worldwide.

Tomoo Gokita
"A Couple"
Acrylic on canvas, 53cm x 46cm.

Gokita, an emerging Tokyo-based artist, is on the rise with his monochromatic tableaus that are captivating in their austerity, yet expressive in a way normally reserved for the world of color. An accomplished draftsman with a keen eye and inexhaustible wit, Gokita's true genius is revealed in his fluid black and white gouache and acrylic paintings that combine varying measures of figurative rendering and free form doodling that have become the hallmark of his early work. Conspicuously incorporating varying eras of art tradition -- Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism, Conceptualism, Op Art, Minimalism, Psychedelia -- Gokita then filters his influences through a lens of vintage B-movie kitsch and film noir atmospherics that imbue his paintings with eerie irreverence and dark undertones. Breaking with his exceedingly strict monotone palette, the color yellow makes its Gokita premiere in "A Couple" in honor of Armstrong, LIVESTRONG and the cause at hand. He is represented by Honor Fraser in Los Angeles and ATM Gallery in New York.

Geoff McFetridge
"Even the Simplest Shapes Wish to Become Logos One Day"
168cm-diameter circular sculpture (made up of large individual yellow
wooden pushpins).

In "Even the Simplest Shapes Wish to Become Logos One Day," McFetridge has created a special tribute to the iconic yellow LIVESTRONG band. "Pins are a reoccurring visual motif that I have used over the years. I like their clunky ordinariness. In this piece, I imagine each pin as an individual. Each part works to complete the ring," he explained. "The yellow circle/bracelet becomes an object of unity and strength. In this way I am using my own graphic language to interpret Lance's. If each bracelet represents a person's solidarity to the cause, each of these pins can also represent an individual -- a survivor, a future survivor, or one who will come across cancer in his or her life, which is all of us."

Erik Parker
"Fake Out"
Acrylic on canvas, 109cm x 102cm.

Parker, a visionary artist, channels a furious energy into his paintings that recalls the abstract fervor of the psychedelic artists of the 1960s, but with a stylistic freshness and contextual purpose that is distinctly modern and entirely his own. Born in Stuttgart, Germany and raised in San Antonio, Texas, Parker's interest in art developed at a young age and his early drawing style was indelibly influenced by such street level Pop Culture touchstones as psychedelia, skateboarding, graffiti and street art, and acid culture throughout his oftentimes wayward youth. A drive to become a professional artist developed later for Parker and he ultimately received a scholarship to the University of Texas at Austin where his studies under the legendary painter Peter Saul helped solidify his most wild graphic ambitions. "Fake Out" reveals the story of a psychedelic fish-like creature overcoming all odds and faking out cancer, all bathed in vivid swirling colors. Parker is represented by Honor Fraser Gallery in Los Angeles and Paul Kasmin Gallery in New York.

Raymond Pettibon
"No Title (From the Ends)"
Pen and ink on paper, 91cm x 56cm.

An iconic countercultural artist, Pettibon's proximity to the early Los Angeles punk rock scene as brother of musician/producer Greg Ginn of Black Flag and punk record label SST played a significant role in his artistic development and the branding of an era. During his tenure as in-house designer for SST through the late '70s and early '80s, he experimented with his distinctly lo-fi comic book-influenced drawing technique on album artwork and concert flyers. Throughout his career, Pettibon has continued to combine figurative drawing and oftentimes enigmatic and cryptic text, typically rendered with black ink or watercolor on paper though he's come to embrace the use of bright color in his most recent work. His texts are often gathered from a disparate array of profound literary sources before being transcribed in slightly altered form and placed in ironic juxtaposition with his imagery. Pettibon's STAGES work features a train crash fronted by a yellow tinted graveyard as a powerful reminder about the devastation inflicted by this global epidemic and the urgent need to defeat it. Pettibon is represented by Regen Projects in Los Angeles.

Lari Pittman
"Untitled #11"
Acrylic, cel vinyl and aerosol lacquer on gessoed canvas over panel, 132cm
x 102cm.

Drawing from diverse visual traditions including folk art and commercial design, Pittman creates paintings that fill the picture plane with an abundance of patterns, figures and text. He weaves these layers into a tapestry of visual information, forcing the viewer to linger over each painting, pulling at threads to unravel shades of meaning. Pittman's STAGES work expands on his recent interest in 16th- and 17th-century vanitas paintings, which incorporate themes such as skulls, cut flowers and rotting fruit to mark the passing of time and the transience of life. But the somber tone of these traditional works is reimagined in Pittman's art, which marries bright colors, playful animals and illuminated globes to suggest that it is the joy and hope in life we should seize upon when confronting our finite nature. Pittman is a professor of art at UCLA and is represented by Regen Projects in Los Angeles.

Richard Prince
"I'm Not Coming Home"
Collage and acrylic on canvas, 117cm x 86cm.

Known as brilliantly iconoclastic and often controversial, American artist Prince has developed a method of repurposing existing media content observed by millions in a way that frees them of their typically inane origins and allows them to spark new visual dialogues in the process. Well-known examples include his "Cowboy" series, derived from cigarette ads, his "Jokes" series, incorporating lines (oftentimes purposefully bad ones) copied from joke books, and his iconic "Nurses" series, which employs imagery of nurses taken from the covers of men's midcentury pulp novels. In "I'm Not Coming Home," Prince has combined a "Joke" painting with "Nurse" imagery, an exceedingly rare feat. He has done so to both reference cancer -- the joke part being a riff on the 1902 song "Bill Bailey, Won't You Please Come Home" -- and to pay personal tribute to Armstrong -- since the cyclist was cared for deeply and constantly by the nurses of Indiana University. Prince lives and works from his house in upstate New York and is represented by Gagosian Gallery.

"Heart Beats"
Mixed media (photograph, speakers, soundtrack), 324cm x 240cm.

JR, the French artist known only by two letters, assembles large-scale reproductions of his black and white portrait photographs in cities around the world, forming unconventional open-air galleries for an unsuspecting mass. His mission is to break down the traditional boundaries of the fine art world by creating work about underrepresented people on a global level and displaying it in vast public spaces so that the images may be seen and experienced by all regardless of class, wealth or level of access. His 28 Millimeters project, an ongoing photography series of young residents in post-conflict zones around the world, took JR to the favelas of Rio de Janeiro. He returned to this disadvantaged neighborhood instituting a huge-scale fine art installation by adhering his work to the tops and sides of houses, buildings and even entire trains. His intention is to celebrate the dignity of his subjects and raise awareness about the conditions in which many of them continue to live. "Heart Beats" is a compelling mixed media sound sculpture in tribute to one of the women he met while creating his favela project. He explains, "Linda lives in Morro da Providência, the oldest favela in Rio, Brazil. In this place, houses are made of plastic, and kid's guns are made of steel. Nothing runs: no schools, no hospitals, no social services. Linda has throat cancer and she might be dead by the end of the STAGES exhibition tour. She used to be a choral teacher. She lost her voice, but her heart is still beating..."

Tom Sachs
"Lance's Tequila Bike for Girls"
Carbon fiber Trek Madone race cycle with mixed media (CETMA rack, welded
steel, synthetic polymer paint on plywood, peristaltic pump, Tequila
bottles and tea bags), 99cm x 156cm x 51cm.

Sachs, a sculptor, is best known for his elaborate recreations of various modern icons, all of them masterpieces of engineering and design ranging from Knoll office furniture made of phone books and duct tape to a McDonald's built using plywood, glue and assorted kitchen appliances to Hello Kitty and her friends in foamcore and bronze. A lot has been made of the conceptual underpinnings of these sculptures: how Sachs' sampling capitalist culture, remixing, dubbing and spitting it back out again, so that the results are transformed and transforming. Intended as a thought-provoking machine, "Lance's Tequila Bike for Girls" plays off media stereotypes of Armstrong while capturing his sense of humor. This rolling wet bar is a work of art that must be experienced in person to be fully appreciated. Sachs is represented by Sperone Westwater, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Baldwin Gallery and Tomio Koyama Gallery. Sachs' Space Program is represented and supported by Gagosian Gallery.

Kenny Scharf
"5 for 99 cents"
Mixed media (acrylic, silkscreen, spray paint, oil and glitter on linen),
152cm x 122cm.

Scharf first gained recognition among the fertile East Village art community of the 1980s, developing a proto-Pop graffiti style at the creative dawn of the medium. Though best known for his paintings of cartoonlike figures, both invented and appropriated from popular culture, and his sculptures that comprise found objects richly decorated with paint and appliqué, Scharf's more recent work also includes slick yet relentlessly fun renderings of everyday objects like cars and doughnuts -- equal parts Pop Art and ad annual. "5 for 99 cents" offers a kaleidoscopic viewing of floating Pop motifs including brightly colored tumor-like formations that represent the threat of cancer lurking in our lives. He is represented by Honor Fraser Gallery in Los Angeles.

Dustin Yellin
"If Ink Were Blood (Man and Woman)"
Resin, acrylic and ink, 182cm x 60cm x 34cm.

Existing in a genre-defying netherworld between the narrow classifications of "painter" and "sculptor," the Brooklyn-based Yellin creates unique hybrid works that might be best described as "3-D paintings." Yellin explains the twin life-size sculptures in "If Ink Were Blood," "...represent the incomprehensible biological ingenuity that compose the human machine. As time passes, mutations occur, and one can only imagine what the human form will look like in 1,000,000 years. This couple represents and deconstructs the human form from the inside out. It brings the delicate tissues and circulations to the foreground of a bodily representation. They are testaments to the collective scientific vision and understanding of the human body. To cure cancer is to understand this beautiful machine."

STAGES Information

To view work and for more information, visit O.H.W.O.W. is open Fri, Dec. 4-Sat., Dec. 5, 12-8pm ET and Sun., Dec. 6, 12-6pm ET. To contact O.H.W.O.W. call (305) 633-9345 or visit STAGES art is for sale until sold. After Dec. 6, enquiries can call LIVESTRONG at (512) 279-8356.


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