Sarah Lucas. Geezer. 2002

Sarah Lucas Geezer 2002

  • Not on view

Geezer is part of a large body of work by Lucas dedicated to Charlie George, a star player of one of the top London soccer clubs during the 1970s. Lucas grew up in the same gritty working-class neighborhood as George, who in the artist's youth represented dreams of stardom and escape. Here, in a portrait comprised primarily of collaged pizza-parlor advertisements, Lucas uses her relationship with the soccer star as a touchstone for a complicated investigation of identity, success, and marketing.

While George is the ostensible subject of the portrait, the figure bears an uncanny resemblance to Lucas, whose work typically explores androgyny, the hybridity of personal identity, and double meanings. Indeed, Geezer can be understood as a kind of self-portrait connecting the artist's personal history with that of the soccer star's. However, Geezer is infused with a biting political critique as well. By rendering the face of the portrait from advertisements—the only legible identifying characteristic in the drawing is the logo of George's team, Arsenal—Lucas seems to speak to the commodification of bodies in sports, and in society generally. Not only are the fans' identities molded by their identification with sports stars, but those models to which they aspire are themselves just blank screens for the projection of logos. In this light, the letters "nanza," which emblazon the absolute center of the subject's forehead, stand as a poignant symbol for the fragmentary nature of the "bonanza" of success. For as much as Geezer celebrates Charlie George and represents dreams and their realization, it also depicts the underbelly of certain aspects of late-stage capitalism—a stance perfectly attuned to the tradition of political commentary in much collage, to which Lucas knowingly nods with this work.

Publication excerpt from The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA Highlights, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, revised 2004, originally published 1999, p. 371.
Medium
Oil, cut-and-pasted printed paper, and pencil on wood
Dimensions
31 7/8 x 29 1/2" (81 x 74.9 cm)
Credit
Purchased with funds provided by The Buddy Taub Foundation, Dennis A. Roach, Director
Object number
8.2003
Copyright
© 2019 Sarah Lucas
Department
Drawings and Prints

Installation views

MoMA collaborated with Google Arts & Culture Lab on a project using machine learning to identify artworks in installation photos.

If you notice an error, please contact us at digital@moma.org.

If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

All requests to license audio or video footage produced by MoMA should be addressed to Scala Archives at firenze@scalarchives.com. Motion picture film stills or motion picture footage from films in MoMA's Film Collection cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For licensing motion picture film footage it is advised to apply directly to the copyright holders. For access to motion picture film stills please contact the Film Study Center. More information is also available about the film collection and the Circulating Film and Video Library.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication or moma.org, please email text_permissions@moma.org. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to archives@moma.org.

This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to digital@moma.org.