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American Prince

In his first solo exhibition at the National Library of France, “Richard Prince, American Prayer” is an inside look into the contemporary artist’s inspiration gathered from avid book collecting, pop culture, and counter culture America.

Staged in a series of beat, hippie, and punk scenes, the exhibition is rightfully set to the tunes of Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Bob Dylan and the Velvet Underground.  Prince’s collection of rare books and manuscripts by the likes of Celine, Cocteau, Rimbaud and Genet, his underground magazines from Europe, and popular books drawn from the collections of the National Library of France, are all on display to show the distinct impact these works had on his famous Marlboro cowboy advertising campaigns or his “Nurses” series of paintings.

Richard Prince’s art is the best representation of the cross-culturalism between Europe and America during the second half of the 20th century.  His personal universe between the two countries  is illuminated in this exhibition by artistic work of his own, as well as that of some of the greatest luminaries of the beat and pulp fiction generations.

Capping off the exhibition is a staged library full of books designed by Prince and other bibliophile treasures that have only rarely been exposed to the public.

Richard Prince, American Prayer

Bibliothèque Nationale de France (BnF)

11 Quai François Mauriac 75013 / +33 (0)1 53 79 53 79

Through: June 26, 2011

Photos: Courtesy of the BnF

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