Poor Artists

A moving, eye-opening journey through the world of contemporary art from one of the most innovative voices in the field

At a moment in which working as a professional artist is an increasingly unattainable luxury, art criticism duo The White Pube investigate why so many artists try anyway. Labelled “the Diet Prada of the art world” by British Vogue, in Poor Artists writers Gabrielle de la Puente and Zarina Muhammad ridicule a contemporary art world that has turned art into artworks, art schools into art universities, and creative expression into cut-throat competition.

Poor Artists follows aspiring artist Quest Talukdar as she embarks on a surreal journey into the creative industry, where she must decide whether she cares more about success or staying true to herself. Featuring dialogue from anonymous interviews with real people who have all had to ask themselves the same question – including a Turner Prize winner or two, a recluse, a Venice Biennale fraudster, a communist messiah, a ghost, and a literal knight – The White Pube tell the story of art like never before.

The White Pube is the collaborative identity of UK-based critics Gabrielle de la Puente and Zarina Muhammad. They have been turning heads since 2015 when the pair began publishing provocative art reviews and essays online from their art school studios and have earned themselves an international cult following due to their innovative writing style, their honesty and irreverence, and their willingness to challenge the pale, male, stale art establishment. The White Pube have worked with art schools, galleries and museums in the US, Canada, Australia, India, Cyprus, South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia, the United Arab Emirates, Norway, and across Europe with organisations in Portugal, Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Sweden and Ireland. Poor Artists is their first book.