Mental Toys, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

In his latest series of large-scale paintings, American artist David Salle combines images sourced from vintage advertising with black and white cartoons from copies of The New Yorker from the 1950s.

Called Self-ironing Pants and Other Paintings, the works are also inspired by pop art, surrealism and abstract expressionism and include objects in vibrant colours culled from marketing imagery, such as cars, cigarettes, microwave dinners and tissues. “Ever since I started painting, I have tried to get the fluidity and surprise of image connection, the simultaneity of film montage, into painting,” Salle explains.

The title Self-ironing Pants and Other Paintings is typical of Salle’s ironic stance on the status of painting, which he accentuates by using the witty slapstick mood encapsulated in the cartoons from The New Yorker. He definitely challenges the notion of narrative, by presenting stereotypical fragments of the American lifestyle of the 1950s and 1960s. “This is not to historicise the present moment or the recent past; it’s a recognition that the ‘great destabilising’ has already occurred,” he adds.

On show at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac from 24 January, the kaleidoscopic paintings give us a constant stream of thoughts, feelings, and visuals that constitute an intense, energetic and humorous portrayal of contemporary life today. Discover more at davidsallestudio.net.

A Night in the Sky with Friends, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

A Night in the Sky with Friends, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

Self-ironing Pants, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

Self-ironing Pants, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

Serenade, 2019. © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

Serenade, 2019. © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

Shining in All Directions, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

Shining in All Directions, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

In Her Hands, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

In Her Hands, 2019 © David Salle / ADAGP, Paris, 2020 Courtesy of Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, London, Paris, Salzburg. Photos: John Berens

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Katy Cowan

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