Purple Magazine
— S/S 2013 issue 19

Richard Prince

photography by RICHARD PRINCE at Fulton Ryder
text by JEFF RIAN

What a great way to brighten a day! The Outdoor Co-ed Topless Pulp Fiction Appreciation Society, a small group of bare-chested naturalists, came to look around Richard Prince’s invitation-only art gallery-cum-bookstore, Fulton Ryder. He showed them some art and some books. The latter included a signed first edition of Raymond Chandler’s 1939 noir fiction The Big Sleep and Prince’s republication of J.D. Salinger’s cult-novel The Catcher in the Rye. Only this edition has Richard Prince as its nom de plume, replacing the author’s own.

First published in 1951, The Catcher in the Rye introduced us to the antihero Holden Caulfield, who changed many young men’s lives. In a first-person narrative, said to be based on the author’s own experiences, Caulfield returns home to New York City after being thrown out of his fourth school. He speaks of his mistrust of the adult world and, in the process, also reveals his blatantly duplicitous means of surviving adolescence — on his own terms. On The New York Times bestseller list for 30 straight weeks, The Catcher in the Rye was instantly popular but frequently censored by an establishment that, at the time, was formally programmed to run against such revealing intimations of adolescent life — feelings that many had but could not express. Richard Prince’s republication, now available at Fulton Ryder — which, incidentally, is located not far from the neighborhood where Caulfield snuck home in the middle of the night — is an artwork of related sensibility, republished by an artist who has not only attracted great public interest but also, time and again, tested established mores. And isn’t it just that much nicer to have these fearlessly open and unabashedly friendly girls to grace this story?

[Table of contents]

S/S 2013 issue 19

Table of contents