Erik Brunetti’s work strikes a perfect balance between authorial presence and formal invention. Conveying provocative statements of iconoclastic intent, his pieces contemplate theories deeply rooted in nonconformity, lending a distinctive quality to his work. With a career spanning over the course of more than two decades, Brunetti has always maintained a sense of self, channeling his raw talent, rebellious nature and astute observations throughout all of his undertakings, be it design, photography, music, film or fine art. Brunetti’s affection for political theory and current affairs lends further elements of danger and turbulence to his work, frequently compared to that of the Situationist International and Arte Povera movements. These innate characteristics were precisely what inspired Ivan Karp to exhibit Brunetti’s first solo show at OK Harris in 1996, an installation which was re-created in 2011, commissioned by Jeffrey Deitch, MOCA’s then-director. The piece was prominently featured in the Art In The Streets museum retrospective which surveyed the development of subversive art from the 1970’s to the present. After relocating to Marfa, Texas, Brunetti started creating works inspired by his environment as well as life in a small West Texas town surrounded by vast ranch land and mountainous skylines. His branded steer hide & hand-forged cattle brand series was presented by Vito Schnabel, in gallery in NYC.
Erik Brunetti was born in 1967 in Phillipsburg, New Jersey. He lives and works in Marfa, Texas & His work can be found in public and private collections internationally. He is the founder of the iconic street wear and lifestyle brand FUCT.
*selected works from this series were exhibited in the Veils group show (with Chris Burden & Marnie Weber) at the Underground Museum in LA, April 2014.
Inspired by the desire to create variables within the history that is taught and generally unquestioned as truth, the artist applied thick layers of oil bar to original antique lithographs collected over the years, censoring significant portions of pristine, archival imagery; thus destroying, or rather devaluing history as we know it. Incorporating figural elements from the past, the Codex Series creates unmitigated tension between the physicality of the subject, rooted in collective memory, and the secular abstract by impairing the original context.