lichtenstein's comics
October 16, 2004 12:12 AM   Subscribe

Deconstructing Roy Lichtenstein (image heavy page). It has been noted, in a current exhibition, that "Lichtenstein drew visual material from a wide range of sources, from comic books to art history. His revisions of this material often drastically altered its original meaning" Did they? David Barsalou has spent the last 25 years going through over 30,000 comics to find those originals. (via papelcontinuo)
posted by vacapinta (11 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Good link, interesting to see that he was just presenting many of the comics as is or slightly simplified. Same old stuff + new context = high art. Also interesting to see the source for something I looked at many times before. I just happened to be in Osaka today in a neighborhood where I used to work, and walked past this building with a giant Roy Lichtenstein covering several floors of the north side.
posted by planetkyoto at 2:53 AM on October 16, 2004

I don't know if he "drastically altered its original meaning" as much as took the original images out of context forcing the spectator to provide their own back story/narrative. He did clean up some of them very nicely . I haven't decided yet how much this has changed my appreciation of Lichtenstein or if I've transferred my appreciation to the original comic book artists. I had thought he had altered them more. Thanks for the link - the perfect thing to ponder as I go to bed.
posted by snez at 4:00 AM on October 16, 2004

"Ninety percent of all art is imitation of other art."
- H. L. Mencken
posted by jfuller at 6:13 AM on October 16, 2004

To an extent he is selecting and abstracting, and to an extent he is altering. The result is a nice question/statement about art and is also art itself.
posted by Outlawyr at 7:02 AM on October 16, 2004

amazing stuff, i was wondering when someone was going to do this.

thanx for the link!
posted by Stynxno at 7:26 AM on October 16, 2004

Personal note: I had worked with Roy L. at a college in N.J.--I used to laugh at the stuff he did. One day he drove up to the building where courses where held in a brand new Porsche...Short time later, he gave up teaching to work full time at his art. I continue to drive a cheapshit old car.
posted by Postroad at 8:07 AM on October 16, 2004

I think Lichtenstein's works did alter the meanings, because they were one frame shown out of the original context. Weird lines like '-flatten sand fleas!' become very weird indeed.

What's really interesting to me is how I'd say 95% of the original images were drawn with more skill and impact than Lichtenstein's duplicates. He doesn't abstract the images that significantly, and it's often just a matter of removing some sketchy shading. Sometimes his copying is just plain bad, to the point where I question his skills as a draftsman, though I realise the way he duplicated the images was often elaborate and time-consuming. I don't know that it's the website author's intent, but I came away respecting Lichtenstein less and the pulp artists he uses as sources more.

I wonder what the artists he lifted imagery from think of his work?
posted by picea at 8:08 AM on October 16, 2004

thanks for this.
posted by whatnot at 10:44 AM on October 16, 2004

[what picea said]
and, [this is good]
posted by Grod at 1:09 PM on October 16, 2004

Incidentally, Irv Novick--who was Lichtenstein's supervising officer during World War II, and from whose comics work Lichtenstein got a LOT of the images he used in his paintings--passed away just this past week, at the age of 88.
posted by 88robots at 1:23 PM on October 16, 2004

Alternate link (Coral. The original site seems to be down now)
posted by vacapinta at 6:07 PM on October 16, 2004

« Older Philosophy   |   Approved by the Council Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments