Edited with text by Ulf Küster. Text by Janet Bishop, Jason Edward Kaufman, Charlotte Sarrazin.
A mouth-watering celebration of Thiebaud’s painterly world of pies, cakes and gumball machines
Wayne Thiebaud’s (1920–21) iconic still lifes of pies, cakes, gumball machines and lipsticks critically reflect on the promise of the American dream: a society of plenty where supply exceeds demand. Thiebaud depicted these objects as mass-produced commodities rather than idealized entities, updating the still life genre for the modern age. He achieved this effect through serial repetition and synthetic colors and by applying his paint impasto-style; Thiebaud quite literally spread the frosting effects onto his famous cakes. This catalog, published in tandem with the exhibition at Foundation Beyeler in Switzerland, presents all aspects of the legendary American artist’s oeuvre, including his still lifes and portraits, as well as his deserted, multiperspectival cityscapes and river landscapes. All his paintings, rendered in luminous pastels, exude a peculiar flavor of summertime sadness.