Hands Off Mayakovski
New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, Connecticut. Gift of the Estate of George Deem,1913. Accession Number 2013.54.56
| Image Notes
Painting inscribed by the artist on the reverse: Hands off / Mayakovski / oil on canvas 1977 / 40 X 35 cm / 16 X 14 inches / George Deem.
Scanned slide available showing reverse of canvas.
Vermeer, The Milkmaid, c. 1658-60. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.
Aleksandr Rodchenko, photo portrait of Mayakovsky seated on a chair designed by Rodchenko, 1924
"Hands Off China!" by Vladimir Mayakovsky, 1927. Agitverse: "War -- / daughter of imperialism / stalks / a specter through the world. Workers, roar: Hands Off China!" Quoted by George Deem, "Extra Genre," WhiteWalls #6, Summer 1981, p. 17.
Photolithograph from the painting
Title Hands Off Mayakovsky. Paper size 25 3/4 x 21 1/4, Image size 19 x 16 3/4 inches. Edition 300, 1980, 8 colors. Printer: Jorge Dumas NY (JD), Atelier Dumas, New York. Signed by the artist lower right, Printer's imprint lower left.
Poem by Etel Adnan
With the 1980 photolithograph from George Deem's 1977 painting Hands Off Mayakovsky hanging on the wall of her writing room, Etel Adnan in 2002 wrote 13 Mayakovsky poems. The poems are addressed to Mayakovsky:Maiakovsky, where are you? (First line, Poem 1).The 13 poems were published under the title "Maiakovsky" in the anthology enough, Editors: Leslie Scalapino & Rick London, O Books, Oakland, California, 2003. Etel Adnan sent a copy of enough to George Deem, with an enclosed postcard note to Ronald Vance:
The years were turbulent,
students were reading you in
their beds in their seasons of
and Vermeer was working on your
In October 2003 George Deem did go to Paris where he visited and had lunch with Etel Adnan.
| Artist's Notes
The 1976 oil-on-paper picture Hands Off Mayakovski which was reproduced with your article in Connaissance des Arts (April 1977), is a study for an oil-on-canvas painting, same title. In the study, Mayakovski wears a comic-book-green suit. In the painting, the suit is comic-book purple. ... The oil-on-canvas painting Sebastian in the Kitchen is of course from the drawing you own, which was also reproduced in Connaissance. It is one of a series of three paintings, with Hands Off Mayakovski andWords By Ronald Vance (later retitled Seventeen by the artist). In the current show (at Allan Stone Gallery, New York) these pictures were hung in sequence: Sebastian, Mayakovski, Words By R.V. These three pictures can also be joined as a triptych. (George Deem, letter to Udo Kultermann, November 26, 1977)
Allan Stone Gallery, New York