Richard Prince was born in Panama in 1949. He began consolidating his style during the early 1970s, when he began working with photography and found advertising images. He became known for these appropriated works, in which re-photographed and cropped advertisements are displayed on their own or in groups to emphasize the subtle, yet powerful impact of mass media images in shaping contemporary consumer culture. Over time, Prince continued to use appropriated imagery, particularly humorous cartoons and mismatched jokes, that he copied onto large, monochrome canvases. These works evolved to eventually include mostly text based elements manipulated in a painterly manner. Within them, medium and text overlap in playful ways, demonstrating the subjective nature of meaning and reflecting Prince's preoccupation with notions of contemporary culture. Prince is also well known for his sculptural work as well as his famous Nurse Paintings, which take figures from medical romance novels and transform them into striking, mysterious and sometimes gruesome characters. Recent works are also painterly in nature and include abstract figuration elements highly influenced by the works of Willem de Kooning.
Richard Prince has exhibited extensively throughout the United States and Europe. Recent solo exhibitions of his work have been held in institutions such as the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York in 2007, the Astrup Fearnley Museet for Moderne Kunst in Oslo in 2007, and the Sabine Kunst in Munich in 2003. He has also participated in exhibitions in major institutions such as the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, the Canon Photography Gallery at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and the Centre Pompidou in Paris. Prince has participated in several international biennials and his work has been featured in multiple publications. Richard Prince currently lives and works in New York.