February 26, 2006

Ooooooh, shiny!

They aren't real orange crate labels, but they should have been: 281 paintings by Ben Sakoguchi!

Lady Day Brand oranges

Lady Day Brand [1994; 10 in x 11 in]

From Sakoguchi's website:

From the 1880's to the 1950's, California oranges were sent to market packed in wooden crates with big, multi-colored labels pasted on the ends. Among Ben Sakoguchi's early influences were the bold graphics and fanciful images on the orange crates that were stacked behind his parents' grocery store.

In the 1970's — after cardboard cartons had replaced wooden crates — beautifully printed labels that had long been stored in packing houses were being sold as collectors' items at the flea markets Sakoguchi frequented. He was attracted by the familiar orange crate label format, and started using it in a series of small paintings.

Just as the actual labels had depicted a wide variety of subjects, Sakoguchi's paintings sampled events, issues and attitudes of modern culture. He produced several hundred orange crate label paintings (1974–1981) before moving on to other projects.

In 1994, Sakoguchi revisited the orange crate label format, and has continued the series....

You can view the 218 paintings that Sakoguchi made between 1994 and 2003 if you go over here.

Posted by Magpie at February 26, 2006 01:20 AM | Shiny Things | Technorati links |