Raymond Pettibon born in Tucson, Arizona, with the name Raymond Ginn, lives and works near Los Angeles, where he has been an influential figure in the art community, especially the punk art scene, since the early 1980s. Pettibon is especially noted for his drawing abilities.
His illustrative ink drawings, videos, books and wall paintings use themes from everyday life on the American west coast, politics, the media, comics, film, the world of art and the hippie and punk movements of the late sixties and seventies. Subjects include surfers, electric light bulbs, trains, phalluses, clouds etc.
To his early admirers and collectors, he was an unofficial in-house artist for the punk music scene including bands “Sonic Youth” and “Black Flag.” His satire is directed to contemporary fixations such as baseball, surfing and space aliens.
In the 1970s, he studied economics at UCLA, but instead of pursuing a career in economics, he created artist books, which were black and white staple bound pamphlets with titles such as Captive Chains and Tripping Corpse. “These black-and-white, staple-bound pamphlets trolled the seamy side of postwar America (many images were inspired by scenes on late-night TV broadcasts of B-movies), and were usually captioned with pithy phrases that suggest bizarre narratives…..”(Rubinstein, 144)
Raphael Rubinstein, “PETTIBON”, Art in America, December, 2008, pp. 142-145
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Astrid Wege, Art at the Turn of the Millennium