William Nelson Copley, ‘Untitled (X-Rated Series)’, 1973, David Nolan Gallery
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Untitled (X-Rated Series), 1973

Charcoal on paper
23 1/2 × 18 in
59.7 × 45.7 cm
.
$20,000 - 30,000
Location
New York, Los Angeles
Have a question? Visit our help center.
About the work
Provenance
Medium
William Nelson Copley
American, 1919–1996
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Forging an unprecedented and unlikely link between the European Surrealist and American Pop Art movements, William N. Copley painted sweetly humorous, softly pornographic vignettes. His works are Surrealist in their unbridled expressions of sexual desire—he painted couples making love, men and women fantasizing about each other, figures in various states of undress and stages of foreplay. Through his use of bright colors, cartoonish figures, and wildly patterned backgrounds, Copley tempered his sometimes-X-rated imagery with a visual language similar to that of Pop Art. While his imagery is mined from a variety of sources, including racy magazines he would buy from the seedy shops that used to dominate New York’s Times Square, Copley’s work is whimsical, joyful, and lyrical. As he claims: “Humor, after all, is the reminder that we are mortal.” As his paintings suggest, so, apparently, is sex.

William Nelson Copley, ‘Untitled (X-Rated Series)’, 1973, David Nolan Gallery
Save
Save
View
View in room
Share
Share
About the work
Provenance
Medium
William Nelson Copley
American, 1919–1996
Follow

Forging an unprecedented and unlikely link between the European Surrealist and American Pop Art movements, William N. Copley painted sweetly humorous, softly pornographic vignettes. His works are Surrealist in their unbridled expressions of sexual desire—he painted couples making love, men and women fantasizing about each other, figures in various states of undress and stages of foreplay. Through his use of bright colors, cartoonish figures, and wildly patterned backgrounds, Copley tempered his sometimes-X-rated imagery with a visual language similar to that of Pop Art. While his imagery is mined from a variety of sources, including racy magazines he would buy from the seedy shops that used to dominate New York’s Times Square, Copley’s work is whimsical, joyful, and lyrical. As he claims: “Humor, after all, is the reminder that we are mortal.” As his paintings suggest, so, apparently, is sex.

Untitled (X-Rated Series), 1973

Charcoal on paper
23 1/2 × 18 in
59.7 × 45.7 cm
.
$20,000 - 30,000
Location
New York, Los Angeles
Have a question? Visit our help center.
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