CPLY X-RATED • William N. Copley
Paul Kasmin / 2011
Hardcover / 140 pages

Painter, gallerist, writer and collector William N. Copley (1919-1996) was one of Surrealism's most active advocates in America (especially in Los Angeles), and his paintings are increasingly recognized as important precursors to Pop. A close friend to Duchamp and Man Ray, Copley always courted controversy, never more memorably than with his infamous X-Rated exhibition at the New York Cultural Center in 1974. Copley's cartoonish works of the 1950s developed an overtly sexual iconography in the 1960s, which in turn prefigured his erotic and arguably pornographic work of the 1970s. Published on the occasion of Paul Kasmin Gallery's reconstruction of the 1974 show, the book includes 38 superb color plates of the paintings--many of which have not been seen since the original exhibition--as well as Copley's fascinating 1977 memoir of his early years as an exponent and gallerist for Surrealism, "Portrait of the Artist as a Young Dealer."

︎Condition note: A used book in Very Good condition / minor black scuffing to front cover as pictured