Patrick Webb

Oil Paintings

The 2016 recipient of the Guggenheim Foundation award, Patrick Webb continues to create a series of oil paintings fashioning his contemporary “Everyman” from the Punchinello who appeared as a stock figure in seventeenth century Italian commedia dell’arte. Webb has said that his first Punchinello canvases allowed him “to probe the horror of the AIDS epidemic”, but the painter then discovered that his tragicomic clown refused to die. No matter what adventure or trial Punchinello is thrown into – parade, gym, rodeo, fire, brawl, he continues to surprise with his unique combination of strangeness and familiarity. Webb's paintings explore different kinds of light and the expressive implications of the settings from which Punchinello - his world and stories and desires emerge.