Stephen Prina, As He Remembered It, Exhibition view, Secession 2011, Photo: Wolfgang Thaler

Stephen Prina

As He Remembered It

May 27 – August 21, 2011

The work of American artist, musician, and composer Stephen Prina is characterized by his appropriation of works by other artists, which he then places in new contexts. This is also the approach taken in his new project As He Remembered It, developed specially for the Hauptraum at the Secession, and in the four new works in his series Exquisite Corpse: The Complete Paintings of Manet.

The point of departure for As He Remembered It is a memory from the 1980s, shared with artist Christopher Williams, of a fitted unit by architect R. M. Schindler that is taken out of its original context, painted, and recontextualized as an independent object. To bring this personal anecdote to the Hauptraum of the Secession, Prina chose two now-demolished houses built in the early 1940s by R. M. Schindler in Los Angeles for Hilaire Hiler and Mrs. George (Rose) Harris. Using surviving plans and photographs, he had copies made of the fitted units, resulting in 28 objects that were then used as supports for monochrome painting—Prina painted them pink using “PANTONE Honeysuckle 2011 COLOR OF THE YEAR”—and restaged in a specially developed grid pattern in the Secession’s Hauptraum.

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Stephen Prina, born in Galesburg (USA) in 1954, lives and works in Los Angeles and Cambridge (USA).