Image: Poverty is No Disgrace
(Norman, Oklahoma, 1952 - )

Poverty is No Disgrace , 1982

Oil, acrylic, charcoal and chair on canvas
98 in. x 205 in. x 20 in. (248.92 cm x 520.7 cm x 50.8 cm)
Museum Acquisition Fund and gift of Larry Gagosian
2000.45 a-d
source material for left panel
alternate view, detail
alternate view, detail
David Salle’s refusal to resolve disparate elements into a harmonious whole reflects a postmodernist world view that emerged in the 1980s. Modernism’s optimism, belief in progress and linear view of history no longer seemed valid in our post-industrial world. In Poverty Is No Disgrace, Salle presents a smorgasbord of images, styles and subjects from art history, raising questions about the role of painting in an image-saturated society. These include whether it is still possible to create a painting that does not reference past art and whether one style is superior to another. The nude, based on a photograph, questions the relationship of photography to painting, while the classic 1950s chair brings up the relative status and interdependence of the “fine” and “applied” arts.
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Online Collection paid for with a grant from
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