Provenance: Published by Gisela Capitain, Cologne & Thea Westreich, New York
Wool is best known for his paintings of large, black, stenciled letters on white canvases. Wool began to create word paintings in the late 1980s, reportedly after having seen graffiti on a brand new white truck. Using a system of alliteration, with the words often broken up by a grid system, or with the vowels removed (as in ‘TRBL’ or ‘DRNK’), Wool’s word paintings often demand reading aloud to make sense.
At 303 Gallery in 1988, Wool and fellow artist Robert Gober presented a collaborative exhibition and installation which included Wool’s seminal text-based painting,Apocalypse Now (1988). The work features words from a famous line in Francis Ford Coppola’s film Apocalypse Now, based on the Joseph Conrad novel Heart of Darkness. From the early 1990s through the present, the silkscreen has been a primary tool in Wool’s practice.