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Better Living Through Windows

Douglas Coupland2013

Vancouver Art Gallery

Vancouver Art Gallery

Echoing Pop artist Roy Lichtenstein’s characteristic flat, representational style, his signature Ben Day dots as well as the bright primary colour palette he borrowed from commercial printing processes, Coupland has created paintings that revisit this Pop artist’s work while simultaneously recasting the ubiquitous signs and symbols of today. Better Living Through Windows references Lichtenstein’s Modern Painting with Clef (1967) in its abstract modern composition, but it is crafted using contemporary iconography such as a TrueType font called Marlett that has been used by Microsoft since 1995 to create user interface icons. Similarly, Coupland’s riff on sunsets replaces Lichtenstein’s sky and ground with barcodes from flight luggage tags and his sunbeams with grocery packaging registration codes.

At the core of Coupland's practice lies a fascination with popular culture. Not only does Coupland utilize the strategies of Pop Art by incorporating objects and images taken directly from everyday life, but he often passes these through the lens of new media. The result is a provocative synthesis of the common with the extraordinary, set in the here and now.

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  • Title: Better Living Through Windows
  • Creator: Douglas Coupland
  • Date: 2013
  • Physical Dimensions: w487.7 x h213 cm
  • Exhibition section: The Pop Explosion
  • Credit line: Private Collection
  • Type: painting
  • Medium: acrylic on linen

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