Roy Lichtenstein was born in New York in 1923. Next
to Andy Warhol he is considered to be the great artist of the Pop Art movement.
The use of familiar subjects like comic strips, bank notes or advertising
themes, makes the art of Roy Lichtenstein easily accessible.
Roy Lichtenstein began his art
studies in 1939 at the Art Students League under urban scene painter Reginald
Marsh. The artist continued his studies at Ohio State University where he was introduced to
European Modernism and the works of Picasso, Klee and Kandinsky. His studies
were interrupted by military service, but, after the war, Lichtenstein returned
to Ohio State and completed a Masters in Fine
Art degree in 1949.
As a central figure in the Pop
Art movement of the 1960s, Lichtenstein sought an anonymous style, removing all
personal reference from his work to convey the appearance of mass production.
Borrowed imagery from the pages of magazine advertisements and newspaper comic
strips became the focus of his compositions. In discussing his work,
Lichtenstein once said: "All my art is in some way about other art, even
if the other art is cartoons."
Working with stencils,
Lichtenstein developed a technique using rows of dots that mimicked the
commercial printing patterns used in the production of comic books. This
resemblance was further emphasized by Lichtenstein's selection of a palette of
bright primary colors that replicated the chromatic range of comic books. In
addition, the artist has produced several large scale sculptures commissioned for
public places, most notably "Mermaid" in Miami Beach. Lichtenstein's unconventional
paintings, regarded by many as beyond the bounds of fine art during the 1960s,
are now considered icons of the Pop Art movement and have secured the artist's
place in art history. Lichtenstein has had retrospectives at the Tate Gallery
in London, the Solomon
Museum in New
York and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam.
Other than paintings and sculptures, the artist produced a number of prints for which he used different techniques: lithographs, screenprints, etchings and woodcuts. Often he combined these techniques in one print.