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Only God Knows I'm Good

Tracey Emin (British, born 1963). Only God Knows I'm Good, 2009 (produced 2011). Snow white neon, edition 2/3 plus 2 artist's proofs, overall: 25 x 136 1/2 inches (63.5 x 346.7 cm). Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; Edmund Hayes Fund, by exchange, 2011 (2011:21a-e). © Tracey Emin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Image courtesy of the artist and Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York.

© Tracey Emin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Image courtesy of the artist and Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York.

Image downloads are for educational use only. For all other purposes, please see our Obtaining and Using Images page.

Only God Knows I'm Good

© Tracey Emin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Image courtesy of the artist and Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York.

Image downloads are for educational use only. For all other purposes, please see our Obtaining and Using Images page.

Tracey Emin

British, born 1963

Only God Knows I'm Good, 2009 (produced 2011)

snow white neon

Edition: 2/3 plus 2 artist's proofs

overall: 25 x 136 1/2 inches (63.5 x 346.71 cm)

Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York

Edmund Hayes Fund, by exchange, 2011

2011:21a-e

Currently On View

More Details

Provenance

the artist;
Lehmann Maupin, New York;
sold to the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, May 3, 2011

Class

Sculpture (visual work)
Light art

Work Type

Construction (sculpture)
Light art

This information may change due to ongoing research. Glossary of Terms

Tracey Emin's work is intensely autobiographical, providing viewers with brief but powerful visual and text-based messages. During the 1990s, Emin rose to notoriety through her involvement with the Young British Artists, or YBAs, a group whose members privileged shock value and unconventional methods of self-promotion. In neon, embroidery, video, photography, and mixed-media installations, Emin reveals the most intimate details of her own life. She addresses the painful, yet regularly shared, experiences of sexual violence, substance abuse, failed relationships, and familial tensions with brutal candor and a poetic sense of humor that can, at times, be challenging. This work, for example, bears the cryptic message “Only God Knows I’m Good” in a script the artist modeled on her handwriting. It is part of a series of works in which the Emin explores recurring themes of love, sex, and lust, and Emin appropriated the text from the title and lyrics of a 1969 song by David Bowie. Her decision to execute the statement in white neon indicates a visual play on the iconography of purity and juxtaposition of a sense of innocence with her provocative persona.

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