Painting, Smoking, Eating is autobiographical, depicting the artist lying in bed, smoking, with a plate of French fries balanced on his chest. Guston's red, pink and grey pallet exacerbates the painting's unsettling mood. The artist's head, missing a nose and mouth and containing only one eye, takes the shape of a lima bean. As with the other objects, such as the shoes, the lima bean-shaped head returns in several of his pictures. He uses them to establish a personal vocabulary of forms and iconography. Guston presents these elements to express ideas about his personal worries or misfortunes. At this point in his life, excessive eating habits and smoking three packs of cigarettes a day began to affect Guston's health. His work from this time can generally be described as grotesque and shows the tragic side of his own existence.
© Philip Guston via Hauser & Wirth




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200 x 266cm.


oil on canvas

Object number

A 38964


verworven met steun van de Vereniging Rembrandt en mevr. Guston / acquired with the generous support of the Vereniging Rembrandt and Mrs. Guston

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