Trend to Collect: Graphic Realism
Signed and dated in pencil, numbered 34/60 (there were also 11 artist's proofs), published by Gemini G.E.L., New York, with their blindstamps, the full sheet, in very good condition, framed
Image 1942 x 776 mm., Sheet 2020 x 854 mm.
From the Catalogue:
It is an attempt to classicise a romantic notion…When I use it in a painting, it is to express the conflict of quasi-expressionistic technique and commercial motif…I am thrilled about the idea of Brushstrokes made of false Brushstrokes. I’m impressed by how artificial things can look. I try to be as stylised as I can get away with. (Roy Lichtenstein, quoted in: Gianni Mercurio, Roy Lichtenstein – Meditations on Art, La Triennale di Milano, 2010, p. 221)
The composition for View from the Window is loosely based on Max Beckmann’s painting Evening on the Terrace (Collection Richard L. Feigen, New York), a view of the Dutch seaside resort of Scheveningen painted in 1928. Lichtenstein’s large format mixed-media print belongs to a series called Landscapes, begun in 1984, in which the artist revisited landscape paintings by modern masters, rendering them in his signature cartoon-like brushstrokes. His homage is full of whimsy and humour. Whilst Beckmann’s view is dark and brooding, Lichtenstein’s treatment evokes the sunny Mediterranean of Matisse and the Fauves, an art historical quip and playful subversion of the Expressionist’s original intent. This effect is achieved with a much wider range of colours than in his earlier prints, with pastel pinks, blues, greens, yellows and metallic silver, supplementing his staple palette of primary colours.
Riva Castleman notes that in his Landscapes Lichtenstein departs from the isolated ‘abstract’ brushstroke of his earlier oeuvre, and instead employs the strokes to define a scene, an open window with a bunch of flowers, looking onto a view of sea and sky, with the sail of a boat in the distance. ‘However much it may be presumed that the artist now conveys depth and atmosphere where he always distinguished his work as flat and made with marks that emphasised and maintained that flatness’, Castleman continues, 'his methods remain the same, but demonstrate that even compositions that presume to give the impression of near and far are still marks on a flat surface. The marks that make the boat are little different from those that make the frame of the window or the adjacent water…the Landscapes accentuate the preposterous conventions of picture-making itself’. (Riva Castleman, Seven Master Print-Makers – Innovations in the Eighties, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, exh. cat. 1991, p. 92).
—Courtesy of Christie's
Corlett 215; Gemini 216
Christie's, New York, 9 May 1989, lot 197 ($46,200).
With Leslie Waddington, London.
Acquired from the above by the present owner.
When American Pop artist Roy Lichtenstein painted Look Mickey in 1961, it set the tone for his career. This primary-color portrait of the cartoon mouse introduced Lichtenstein’s detached and deadpan style at a time when introspective Abstract Expressionism reigned. Mining material from advertisements, comics, and the everyday, Lichtenstein brought what was then a great taboo—commercial art—into the gallery. He stressed the artificiality of his images by painting them as though they’d come from a commercial press, with the flat, single-color Ben-Day dots of the newspaper meticulously rendered by hand using paint and stencils. Later in his career, Lichtenstein extended his source material to art history, including the work of Claude Monet and Pablo Picasso, and experimented with three-dimensional works. Lichtenstein’s use of appropriated imagery has influenced artists such as Richard Prince, Jeff Koons, and Raymond Pettibon.
American, 1923-1997, New York, New York, based in New York and Southampton, New York
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