Peas Are the New Beans

Bob and Roberta Smith (1963 - )

Vinyl paint on panel

1999

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© Bob and Roberta Smith

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  • About the work
    Location
    Country: UK
    City: London
    Place: Government Art Collection

    One of a series of authorative, yet ultimately meaningless statements, 'Peas Are the New Beans' is painted in bold text in Bob and Roberta Smith's distinctive graphic style. Painted statements like this challenge the widely perceived status of the artist as social commentator and as an individual with something important to say.

    Bob & Roberta Smith is the assumed name of the artist Patrick Brill. While working in New York in the early 1990s, he became disillusioned by the commercialism of the art world, particularly its dependency on, and promotion of, celebrity as a determining factor in the success or failure of an artist's career. Brill's interest developed towards the more democratic notion that anybody can make their own art, and that an artist can become an instrument for the expression of ideas, rather than an art celebrity. This approach relates to his use of a pseudonym: by identifying himself as a fictional duo, his intention is to move the focus away from the myth making that can surround an individual artist.

    Patrick Brill was born in London in 1963. He has exhibited and participated in numerous group exhibitions in London, Basel and New York. His first solo exhibition was held at the Hales Gallery, London in 2005. He established the Leytonstone Centre for Contemporary Art in east London as a place to exhibit the work of other artists who share his collaborative approach to making art.

  • About the artist
    Bob and Roberta Smith (Patrick Brill) was born in London in 1964. He studied at the University of Reading – during which time he received a scholarship to the British School in Rome – and at Goldsmiths College, London. He has exhibited and participated in numerous group exhibitions in London, Basel and New York. In 2013, seeing art as an important element in democratic life, Bob and Roberta Smith launched the Art Party with Crescent Arts in Scarborough, to promote art education and the arts. Earlier he established the Leytonstone Centre for Contemporary Art in East London to exhibit the work of other artists who share his collaborative approach to making art. Brill served as a Trustee of the Tate between 2009 and 2013 and is currently a trustee of Art UK, and a patron of the Big Draw and NSEAD. In 2009, he was shortlisted for the Fourth Plinth Project in Trafalgar Square. In 2017, Brill was appointed OBE. He is an Associate Professor of Fine Art at London Metropolitan University.
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    Materials & Techniques
    panel, vinyl paint, painting (as object name)
  • Details
    Title
    Peas Are the New Beans
    Date
    1999
    Medium
    Vinyl paint on panel
    Dimensions
    width: 60.40 cm, height: 61.00 cm, depth: 5.00 cm
    Acquisition
    Purchased from Anthony Wilkinson Gallery, October 1999
    Provenance
    Anthony Wilkinson Gallery
    GAC number
    17402