Glass of Beer (small) by Rodney Graham

Glass of Beer (small), 2005
silkscreen on mirror with lacquered wood frame
20 1/4 x 20 1/4 x 1 3/4 inches (framed)
edition of 50




Like much of Canadian artist Rodney Graham's work, Glass of Beer contains many layers of historical reference. At its core, this mirror shows the artist (who is often featured in his own work) posing as if he's in one of Manet's cafe society portraits that directly reference 17th century Dutch paintings by Franz Hals amongst others. The style of the edition is based on bar mirrors from the era of glam rock and David Bowie. These mirrors have iconic imagery (like Bowie or Budweiser) silk-screened on their surface just as Graham has done with Glass of Beer. Graham has effectively situated himself simultaneously in multiple centuries of cafe society portraiture with this editioned mirror.