Pedro Pedro
Cantaloupe and Kokomo




May 19th – June 19th, 2021

OPENING: Thursday, May 19th from 6-8pm at 86 Walker Street, New York NY 10013

The Hole is proud to present our second show by L.A.-based artist Pedro Pedro. His 2020 summer debut “Still Life” featured cluttered studio and domestic interiors made while under quarantine, while this summer’s still life decisions seem decidedly sunnier. “Cantaloupe and Kokomo” features eight new paintings full of fruit, flower and the intoxication of a tropical fantasy.

On the faux-wood-paneled walls of the gallery, seven of these eight compositions feature wood grain; breakfast trays, bowls, tables and chairs are covered with the squiggly pattern of Pedro-painted wood. We almost shag carpeted the space to go full 70s finished basement, but we were too hot. The vintage vibe in the works is highlighted as these brand-new pieces def have a broken-in vibe: their muted tonality and soft focus comes from Pedro’s technique of applying textile paint onto unprimed linen. Instead of the paint sitting on top of the gessoed fabric these works have the pigment soak into the fibers, dyeing them. The artist paints the image in a few passes to get these gorgeous colors; from hot pink grapefruit to spring pea green, cherry pie red to bright lemon yellow.

Speaking of hot, this body of work shows just how sexy still life painting can be. The works have healthy cherries and peach posteriors with melons that will make you blush. A tied-up hog of lunch meat and the puffed pink buttholes of his grapefruit halves are not shy.  A drop of whipped cream, a dripping ice cube, a slippery egg yolk—there’s literally a bottle of lotion on the lunch table: everything is engorged and there are emollients everywhere.

Of course, with Pedro there is always a bit of “agro” in the “dolce”: most melons are stabbed through with knives, his rotisserie chicken is extra carcass-like: a thermometer and Kleenex grace the breakfast try, while a hairbrush next to a lone spaghetti noodle looks extra disturbing. Cigarettes, oxycodone and nail clippers surround his salad, and what is more poignant than the one sad flap of bologna dangling from the lower rung of his chair? The artist has said these works show the continuity of virtues and vices: the sweet is not so sweet without the sour.

Los Angeles-based artist Pedro Pedro (b. 1986) specializes in capturing the playful anxiety of our everyday milieu. His still life paintings include fruit bowls, lavish spreads of food or clothes chaotically strewn about. In Pedro’s painted universe, wholesomeness coexists with disquiet tension, underscored by the artist’s skewed perspective and flat planes upon which all objects look ready to fall off the canvas. Most important to Pedro’s practice is his intuition: drafted from a collage of images, his scenes come together as he goes along, allowing his inner thoughts to shine through while also leaving space for our own.

An opening event will be held on Wednesday, May 19th from 6 to 8pm following all appropriate COVID-19 precautions.

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PPed-48Pedro Pedro, Tray with Rotisserie Chicken, Pie and Sandwich, 2021. Acrylic and textile paint on linen, 36 x 42 inches, 91 x 107 cm.


PPed-49Pedro PedroTray with Breakfast, Dirty Dishes and Hair Brush, 2021. Acrylic and textile paint on linen, 36 x 42 inches, 91 x 107 cm.


PPed-51Pedro PedroTray with Salad, Tea and Cigarettes, 2021. Acrylic and textile paint on linen, 36 x 42 inches, 91 x 107 cm.


PPed-52Pedro PedroDecorative Plate with Grapefruit, Lilies and Slice of Bologna, 2021. Acrylic and textile paint on linen, 36 x 42 inches, 91 x 107 cm.


PPed-53Pedro Pedro, Wood Bowl with Bologna Sandwich, Sunflower and Fruit, 2021. Acrylic and textile paint on linen, 50 x 57 inches, 127 x 145 cm.


PPed-56Pedro Pedro, Table with Oysters, Lobster, Laundry, Shrimp, Dog and Steaks, 2021. Acrylic and textile paint on linen, 54 x 72 inches, 137 x 183 cm.


PPed-57Pedro Pedro, Chair with Aloe Plant, Bologna, Bag of Fruit and Paintbrushes, 2021. Acrylic and textile paint on linen, 60 x 46 inches, 152 x 117 cm.


PPed-58Pedro Pedro, Wood Bowl with Cantaloupe, Knife, Grapes and Flowers, 2021. Acrylic and textile paint on linen, 42 x 36 inches, 107 x 91 cm.