CULTURE

Rock of Ages: Raymond Pettibon Through the Decades

Raymond Pettibon enrolled in UCLA at just 16 and graduated in 1978, hardly having trouble finding employment—though the pay in the then-burgeoning L.A. punk scene was admittedly irregular. As the resident artist for Black Flag, he illustrated hordes of their album covers and show flyers, all stamped with the trademark four black bars now so recognizable from endless T-shirts and tattoos. From there, he went on to make four decades’ worth of frenetic, macabre, hyper-verbal Pop art illustrations, now gathered in a mammoth career-spanning monograph, Homo Americanus, which accompanies his first major European retrospective, currently at The Deichtorhallen in Hamburg, Germany, and clocks in at nearly 700 pages. As it might sound in the comic books that inspired Pettibon: Thump!

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (Life isn’t always…),” 1982.

2
Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“Black Flag: The Unheard 1983 Demos,” 1995.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (When the going…),” 2007.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (You can call…),” 1986.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (‘That hair injures…’),” 1986.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (Drop in with…),” 1999.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (Did I do…),” 1987.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (‘Pose!’ The command…),” 1991.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (You should not…),” 1987.

10
Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“Black Flag: Slip It In,” 1984.

11
Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (The president’s dead…),” 1985.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (Save downtown! Jesus…),” 1986.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (And as true…),” 2009.

15
Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“Sonic Youth: The Goo That Lives On It In My Heart,” 1991.

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Courtesy of David Zwirner Books.

“No Title (Va-voom. He promised…),” 1993.