Will Rob Pruitt Instagram Series Get Gallery Show?

Artists are clamoring for more artist/celebrity portraits.

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Winona Ryder and Harry Brant. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
David Bowie and Ryan McGinley. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Mister Rogers and Jeff Koons. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Julie Mehretu and Billie Holiday Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
John Baldessari and Papa Smurf: Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Ed Ruscha and Sean Penn. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Ed Ruscha and David Strathairn. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Jordan Wolfson and Andy Samberg. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Simon de Pury and Ralph Fiennes. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Julian Schnabel and Ron Winstone. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Jerry Saltz and the Muppets' Scooter. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Michael Keaton and Richard Prince. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Richard Phillips and Edward Norton. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Raymond Pettibon and Clive Owen. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Cecily Brown and (a much younger) Chrissie Hynde. Photo: Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram
Mark Ruffalo and Gavin Brown. Photo:Courtesy Rob Pruitt via Instagram

artnet News frequently tells you which artists we find follow-worthy on Instagram. Now you can add this one to your list: “Rob Pruitt’s Official Art World/Celebrity Look Alikes Series” in which he pairs famous artists (and art world denizens) with their celebrity look-alikes. We’ve been chuckling about the match-ups since we first saw them a few weeks ago and thought they deserved some year-end love. With all the fanfare surrounding Richard Prince’s Instagram show at Gagosian Gallery (see “Richard Prince Sucks“), we couldn’t help but wonder if Pruitt will be next up with an Instagram-inspired show at his New York gallery Gavin Brown’s Enterprise.

Artist Ed Ruscha must feel special. He was paired up twice though we personally think Sean Penn (ca. Tree of Life and after) is a far better match than David Strathairn. As Pruitt does not identify the subjects of these portraits, some pairs required some sleuthing or support from fellow news team members in order to identify either artists or celebrities that we didn’t immediately recognize. (Is that Billie Holiday next to Julie Mehretu?) And viewers debated some via Instagram comments. Is Ryan McGinley compared with a young David Bowie? Or is that a young Tom Petty, as one commenter proffered. We think Bowie.

Jerry Saltz commented on one post pairing an actor with artist Richard Prince asking “Who is celeb on left,” to which Pruitt responded “Michael Keaton.” Another commenter didn’t recognize the artist or the celebrity.

Other humorously on-point pairings are Heathers star Winona Ryder with the fine boned Harry Brant, the son of collector and publisher Peter Brant, auctioneer Simon de Pury with British actor Ralph Fiennes, and Jeff Koons with his 1970s television doppelgänger.

The series, titled “Rob Pruitt’s Official Art World/Celebrity Look Alikes Series,” has proven enormously popular with artists and fans, including requests for pair ups. Brazilian artist Vik Muniz, known for creating portraits from everyday materials like chocolate syrup and dirt, left a comment on a recent post: “I Want Mine Rob.”

We reached out to Gavin Brown to ask if there were any plans to organize a show of Pruitt’s humorous pairings but the gallery had closed up shop for the holidays until early January.

For now, check out the above slideshow to see some of our favorites.


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