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Jim Nutt (b. 1938)
Jim Nutt (b. 1938)

Gulf

Details
Jim Nutt (b. 1938)
Gulf
signed, titled and dated 'GULf. Jim Nutt 1991' (on the reverse of the frame)
acrylic on linen in medium-density fiberboard frame
23 1/4 x 23 1/4 in. (59 x 59 cm.)
Painted in 1991.
Provenance
Phyllis Kind Gallery, New York
Acquired from the above by the present owner
Exhibited
Seattle Art Museum, Seattle Collects Paintings: Works from Private Collections, 1997.
Chicago, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Jim Nutt: Portraits, March-May 1999.
Chicago, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Jim Nutt: Coming Into Character, January-May 2011, p. 73 (illustrated in color).

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Celine Cunha
Celine Cunha

Lot Essay

Jim Nutt’s Gulf is a vibrant display of the artist’s painterly precision and uniquely whimsical approach to portraiture. As a founding member of the Chicago Imagists, also known as the Hairy Who, Nutt’s eccentric, hard-edged pictures of surreal dream states and fractious, meticulously rendered sitters have come to define the aesthetic of this pivotal regional movement. The present lot depicts a female nude whose crème and rose flesh contrasts warmly against a beige void, the artist’s frame painted with flowing abstract motifs in chocolate and espresso hues. The sitter’s asymmetrical stare and bewildering nose conjure an otherworldly vision reminiscent of Picasso, challenging the viewer’s preconceived notions of beauty and elegance. Painted in the mature stage of his career, Gulf is an exquisite example of the artist’s capacity for humor, fantasy and sensuality on an intimate scale.

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