A key figure in the Pop Art movement, Roy Lichtenstein was inspired by images from comic books, newspaper advertisements, and mail order catalogues, cheaply printed images whose look was as far from "art" as the average person could imagine. With their basic hand drawn line, they were also about as archetypal as image making can get. In response to this dumb beauty of pulp imagery, and to the odd powers of simple black and white images to stimulate our appetite, Lichtenstein made some of his most essential, enduring paintings. The apparently simple paintings of single objects--a tire, a curtain, a sock, a diamond brooch, a golf ball--project riveting clarity, simplicity, and astonishing newness that are the bedrock of his art, and of Pop Art itself.
Essays by Robert Rosenblum and Frederic Tuten.
One of the most beloved and American of Pop artists, Roy Lichtenstein was born in 1923 in New York, and studied there at the Art Students League and later at Ohio State University, in the midst of which he completed a three-year tour of duty in the US Army. His early work was based on American genre and history painting, and took on Cubist and Expressionist styles. His first proto-Pop work was created in 1956; his first Pop "Brushstroke" painting appeared in 1965. This catalog represents the first major survey of Lichtenstein's work since he died in 1997 in New York.