Rob Pruitt is a Pop artist and provocateur that likes to splash around in the narcissistic shallows of contemporary visual culture. He works in many areas of design and art, but today we focus on his art furniture creations.
At times his work has eagerly courted allegations of political incorrectness, from his famously controversial 1992 show at Leo Castelli that explored the marketing of African-American culture to his Amish-inspired 2010 show Pattern and Degradation at Gavin Brown’s Enterprise. But he has also won many admirers for his consistent use of found objects and D.I.Y. techniques, which bring an outsider spirit to works that might otherwise seem like inside jokes.
He has his own series of art furniture that is “tricked out with tangles of images from comics, cartoons, and advertising … hand-drawn in fluorescent colors and black lines with consummate assurance by Mr.Pruitt’s studio assistants.”
Says Rob friend, Bill Powers, “I’ve always liked the idea of art as furniture, whether it’s a Julian Schnabel throne or an Yves Klein coffee table or Dan Colen made some park benches, and with this, Rob has taken the imagery off his graffiti plywood tables and done it as a vinyl wrap over a metal folding chair so the look of the background is more like a plywood tabletop, but then when you touch it, you hear that metallic sound. I think there’s a little bit of an exchange of the visual and the tactile.”
His work has been shown internationally since the early 1990s.