Shows & Exhibitions
High Art? Richard Prince Has Launched His Own Strain of Marijuana—and Treated a Few Lucky Gallery Goers to a Taste
The artists's new strain, “Katz + Dogg," is available in both pre-rolled joints and vape pens.
Ever since he debuted his “Hippie Drawings” in the late 1990s, Richard Prince has had a sustained interest in marijuana culture. His more recent series of “High Times” paintings and collages, which evolved out of the “Hippie Drawings,” have twice appeared on the cover of High Times magazine, including the forthcoming August 2019 collector’s edition.
Now, Prince has gone further and designed his own strain of marijuana.
Last week, after the opening of his exhibition “High Times” at Gagosian’s San Francisco gallery, Prince accompanied gallery goers to a nearby cannabis lounge where he treated them to samples of his new strain, titled “Katz + Dogg.” The product comes in the form of pre-rolled joints and vape pens, both of which feature Prince’s art on the packaging.
“Everybody seems to be piling into pot,” Gagosian told the New York Times at the opening. “It’s like Clooney with tequila. Hopefully it will do as well.” (The gallery has no affiliation with Prince’s new venture.)
The artist first tried marijuana in 1967 after seeing a Doors concert, he told the Times, adding that he’s only recently started consuming it again after a three-decade break. The artist has previously claimed that he doesn’t use the substance while making his work.
Prince’s strain, produced by cannabis company 710 Labs, is based on another strain called “ice cream cake.” It has 23 percent THC, a lesser amount than is found in most varieties these days. Moe Greens, the luxury dispensary visited Prince visited after then opening, currently lists 3.5 grams of “Katz + Dogg” for $81.
The “High Times” series, which debuted in New York last fall, finds the artist largely eschewing his more famous use of appropriation in favor of more traditional painting and collaging techniques that recall Basquiat and de Kooning.
The series, like just about everything Prince does, has been polarizing. In her review of the show, New York Times critic Roberta Smith called the work “uncharacteristically generous and self-revealing,” adding that the artist “has never made anything quite so much fun to look at.”
Critic John Yau, writing for Hyperallergic, had a less positive take. Referring to Prince as “some kind of sad vampire,” he writes, “These are works that you see but do not scrutinize or reflect upon because there is really not much to examine, much less think about.”
When reached for comment, Prince simply told artnet News: “Good Revolution.”
“High Times” is on view through August 23 at Gagosian San Francisco.
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