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"Cherikee Red" is a nostalgic look at a popular soda that people loved in Northeastern Pennsylvania for decades. This painting is one in a series of crushed cans that Quinones created blending Photo Realism and the Pop Art style.

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Comment by Resident Curator on June 19, 2014 at 4:52pm

Curator’s Comments:


Cherikee Red’ is in fact a nostalgic homage to a bygone era; a recent headline about the suspension of patents on Native American mascot logos brings new light to the appropriated Chief image.  However, I do understand this was not the intended context of the artwork, but rather a photorealistic trompe l’oeil.  As a formal painting, the piece enjoys a bold primary color system and graphic value pattern which accentuates the crushed shape of the former object.  By removing all gestural brushstrokes or evidence of the artist’s hand, the piece reads as a fixed cultural artifact rather than a personal illustration of popular culture or commerce.  The can’s crinkles and dents further ad visual interest while imparting a weathered surface to the otherwise smooth metallic luster.  Cherikee Red, along with the other crushed Coke can cleverly plays with the idea of a painting as an object itself versus an illusionistic window into another physical space. I’m intrigued by the presentation of the objects as shaped works, which is an inspired and logical next step in the hyper-realistic ambition.  The shrink wrapped fruit and vegetables alternately look to be homage to Janet Fish’s paintings of similarly wrapped groceries.  I find the painting of the green peppers (In Pepperspective) to be the most successful, overlapping highly representational painting with a sharply contrasting price stamp.  The warping of the stretched clear plastic adds complexity to the subject, as it distorts the peppers underneath with striped bands of tinted violet and orange hues.  I also enjoy how the exterior blue carton seems to twist from the pressure of the cellophane.  Rather that present an idealized view of perfect pieces of fruit processed for our easy consumption, this painting shows us what is actually available in our day to day supermarket gathering.

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