Known popularly as the 'Master of the Stereotype' , Roy Lichtenstein was a great iconic figure of the American pop art movement. Renowned for his comic style of pop art, this leading American pop artist showed to the world that tongue-in-cheek humor could be brought into a simple comic strip that parodied an idea or expression. Here is more information about him.
His early years
Born into an upper middle class family in Manhattan, he demonstrated an interest in the arts from his schooling years. Also a jazz fan, he often drew portraits of musicians playing their instruments. From then onwards, he took classes in art and also trained at the Art Students League of New York. He later studied in the Ohio State University and took up studio courses and also a degree in the fine arts. His work demonstrated a strong influence of cubism and expressionism, with abstract expressionism having a great influence on his works. Other than canvas, he also worked with other media of jewelry and ceramic to create art.
The Roy Lichtenstein Style
It was in the 1960s that Lichtenstein began taking deep interest in pop-like images. He began experimenting with cartoon images and styles, aspects that later led on to create his unique style. One of his remarkable works came through, when his son thread a challenge at him, showing him a picture of Mickey and saying, 'I bet you can not draw as good as that, dad.' ' Look Mickey ' emerged from that experiment, and then led on to many more memorable pieces. His growing interest in consumerism inspired imagery took him to creating many unusual pieces of art.
Roy Lichtenstein created many masterpieces. His work used comic style imagery with thick outlines, bold colors and ben-day dots whichave photo-like color reproductions. His popular works include the Drowning Girl (1963), WHAAM (1963) !, Pow wow (1979), Grrrrrrr !! (1965) and The Head (1992) to name a few. Some of his works are today displayed at the Tate Modern in London and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The National Gallery of Art in Washington DC is however noted to be the largest repository of his works. During the 1970s to 1980s, he also produced a series called 'Artist's Studios' where his style further improved.
Awards and Recognition
He received various awards in his lifetime. These included the National Medal of Arts, Washington DC (1995), Kyoto Prize (1995), Creative Arts Award in Painting, Massachusetts (1991) and also awards by the American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York (1979) and also the American Academy in Rome (1989). Moments of recognition also came in 1977, when he was commissioned by the BMW to paint the Group 5 version racing car. One of his paintings, Torpedo..Los was noted to sell for $ 5.5 million in 1989, at an auction held by Christie's. Other important sales were made in 2005, when In the car sold for $ 16.2 million and a 1964 painting sold for $ 42.6 million.
Roy Lichtenstein wave the pop art culture a new direction to think in. His fresh ideas and work have inspired many artists across the world to experiment with new concepts and materials. An important person who shaped modern art, Roy Lichtenstein drew with a certainty and knowledge of what the end picture would look like. Although he is no more, his art form lives on many walls, continuing to inspire millions of artists every day. Samples of his work are available at http://www.personal-art.me.uk as personalized versions.