The True Artist (Pragmatist)
DIMENSIONS 12" x 9" MEDIUM Acrylic ink, watercolor, and graphite hand-drawing on silkscreen
Unique series of 24, 2020
Signed and numbered by the artist on front
ABOUT THE WORK
William Powhida is a visual artist, cultural critic, and through his eponymous alter-ego, an art world antagonist. In his practice, Powhida satirizes notions of individual genius, the commodification of creativity, and opacities of the art market. In the current hyper-intensified social climate of divisive “post-truth” discourse, Powhida's work appears like a maniacal grin, slipping a welcome parodic intensity into sometimes seemingly benign language.
In his new series, Powhida responds to Bruce Nauman’s 1966 work The True Artist Is an Amazing Luminous Fountain (Window or Wall Shade) with 23 hand-drawn, colorful texts on silkscreen backgrounds. Each work is an interrogation of the myth of the artist and the personal investments we make in a shared cultural identity. Powhida’s cleverly declarative statements underscore the humor in any certainty about what it means to be an artist in a highly competitive, market-based society.