The exhibition presents twenty-five prints by Roy Lichtenstein from 1965 to1997 spanning more than thirty years. Print-making was an important part of Lichtenstein's oeuvre, and his prints often preceded rather than followed paintings of similar subjects.
Ronald Feldman Fine Arts will exhibit twenty-five prints by Roy Lichtenstein from 1965 to1997 spanning more than thirty
years. Print-making was an important part of Lichtenstein’s oeuvre, and his prints, in which he experimented with complex
and subtle processes, often preceded rather than followed paintings of similar subjects. As an overview of many of his
themed motifs, the exhibition illustrates Lichtenstein’s variations of form and composition, suffused with wit and gentle irony,
and rendered in his characteristic Ben-Day dots, geometric shapes, and lines.
The exhibition features several prints from the Interiors series, including The Living Room, Modern Room, Bedroom, La Sortie, Blue Floor, and Red Lamps. The prints are near walk-in-size depictions of domestic rooms based on advertisements from the Yellow Pages of telephone directories. Bold color, hard-edged forms, and reflections from glass that are rendered as black streaks seem to parody the sterility of modern design, while incongruous details hint at other realities – jigsaw-like shapes of a woman’s leg, odd plants, and artwork that decorates the walls with images by himself, Warhol, and others. Two prints related to the Reflections series are Reflections on Hair (1990) and Reflections on Soda Fountain (1991) in which reflections partly obscure the central image.
Drawing for Interior with Restful Painting (1991), the only drawing included in the exhibition, relates to the Interiors series as a template. Lichtenstein has said that he thought of his drawings as the basis for where his thinking takes place. Lichtenstein’s Nude series (1994), based on “girl” comic books, is represented by Two Nudes, State I, with a suggestion of melodrama, and Nude Reading and Thinking Nude in which the curves of the body contrast sweetly with the serious pastime. In this series, Lichtenstein’s Ben-Day dots, sometimes brilliantly rendered in red, flow over several objects at a time to create an undulation of light and space.
Other prints include Sunrise (1965) and Hat (1968), with its image that is both a hat and a boat, are examples of early offset lithographs related to Lichtenstein’s first gallery exhibitions. The River (1985) from the Landscape series combines “cartoon” and “real” brushstrokes. Lichtenstein’s iconic image depicted in The Oval Office (1992) to raise funds for the Democratic National Committee for the Artists for Freedom of Expression project was reproduced on a pin and distributed at the Democratic Convention and then realized as a painting. Several works from 1995-1997 were made for charitable causes: Composition I, II, and IV, a play on musical notes; Virtual Interior with Book, the lyrical Chinese-themed Untitled (Sea), and Interior with Chair. Two prints that were created close to Lichtenstein’s sudden death in 1997, Still Life and Cubist Cello, reference art history, examples of his continual exploration of art based on other art.
Image: Roy Lichtenstein smack mellow
Casey Dorobek, email@example.com
Opening: Saturday, November 22, 6-8
Ronald Feldman Fine Arts
31 Mercer Street
Tuesday-Saturday, 10-6. Monday by appointment.