Wayne Thiebaud, Dark Cakes and Pies, 2006. Courtesy of Susan Sheehan Gallery.

Wayne Thiebaud: Cakes

Wayne Thiebaud is best known for depicting rows and rows of candy-colored frosted cakes, each with different layers, heights, shapes, and decorations. The Pop artist typically paints cakes, pastries, and pies from memory, evoking nostalgia for mid-20th-century American diner culture and his adolescent days spent working in restaurants. But Thiebaud never expected his confectionary paintings and prints to become icons of American art. “Look, a row of pies—that’ll be the end of me trying to be a serious artist,” he remembers thinking. “But I couldn’t leave it alone. It meant something to me.” But Thiebaud didn’t draw a line at these sugar-dusted confections—the artist also portrayed salty snacks like olives, sardines, and deli meats through works on paper. Whether savory or sweet, Thiebaud’s playful depictions of food capture a distinct moment in American ready-made culture of the 1950s and ’60s.

Navigate left
Navigate right
Medium
Reveal less
Price
Reveal less
Ways to buy
Reveal less
Check
Buy now
Check
Make offer
Check
Bid
Check
Inquire
Size
Reveal more
Time period
Reveal more
Color
Reveal more
Navigate left
Navigate right