White Cube is Belgian cartoonist and illustrator Brecht Vandenbroucke’s debut book, a collection of mostly wordless strips that follow a pair of pink-faced twins as they attempt to understand contemporary art and the gallery world. Their reactions to the art they encounter are frequently comedic, as they paint over Pablo Picasso’s famous mural Guernica, and recreate a pixelated version of Edvard Munch’s The Scream after receiving one too many emails. Lushly painted, these irreverent strips poke fun at the staid, often smug art world, offering an absurdist world view on the institutions of that world-questioning what constitutes art and what doesn’t, as well as how we decide what goes on the walls of the gallery and what doesn’t. Brecht Vandenbroucke’s distinctive work blends the highbrow with the low, drawing equally from Gordon Matta-Clark’s site-specific artwork, and the Three Stooges’ slapstick timing. With a knowing wink at the reader, Vandenbroucke continuously uncovers something to laugh about in the stuffiness and pretentiousness of the art world.
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