KAWS Untitled

Man’s Best Friend KAWS

Find out more about KAWS’ Man’s Best Friend, browse prints & editions for sale & view the works wanted by active buyers right now.

In Man’s Best Friend, KAWS presents yet another take on a beloved cartoon character. With 10 individual screen prints, each measuring 35 x 22 inches, KAWS creates a monumental homage to Snoopy of Peanuts fame. While earlier works saw KAWS depict the character in bold colours, here Snoopy is rendered in a black and white sketch-like style, the lines uncharacteristically scrawled onto the page. The various repeated figures of the dog overlap so that the final image becomes a messy composite less in keeping with the clean aesthetic of KAWS’ other screen prints. The works appear almost to be taken from the pages of a sketchbook, acting more like studies for a final painting or print, rather than the finished product itself. But herein lies the attraction and uniqueness of this work. Particularly for its loose, more expressionist style, this is a rarity in KAWS’ oeuvre. Here the artist’s talent as a draughtsman is put on centre stage, along with his artistic maturity, as represented by the sombre colours chosen to depict the subject matter.

The subject however is entirely in keeping with the rest of KAWS’ work. The artist has been appropriating cartoon characters since the late ’90s beginning with his Companion figure who first appeared in a series of ‘subvertisements’ which saw KAWS removing adverts from New York bus shelters and phone booths in order to take them home and paint over them with acrylic. It was from here that the Companion grew to become a vinyl toy that has evolved into the icon as we know it today from countless public art installations and exhibitions.

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