Roy Lichtenstein Biography

Posted by Edward Kurstak on

Roy Fox Lichtenstein was a leading member of the 1960s New York pop art scene that also included Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns and others. Lichtenstein’s work stands out due to its highly graphical comic book style and use of popular American characters such as Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and more, as well as an ironic and cynical look at cliché in American life.

During his deployment in World War II, when he was stationed in France, Lichtenstein encountered both the old masters’ and new modernists’ works and, upon returning to the US, began his practice focusing mostly on abstract expressionism, as well as cubism. He continued this practice for almost two decades while teaching in Cleveland and upstate New York. Within this period, Lichtenstein showed his work at various galleries but struggled to achieve commercial success.

In the early 60s, Lichtenstein relocated to teach at Rutgers, where he met Allan Kaprow and became exposed to the New York art scene. With the newfound perspective he gained from being part of a community of forward-thinking artists, Lichtenstein’s work transformed and he created his best-known works, including Drowning Girl (1963), Wham! (1963) and others. In these paintings, Lichtenstein uses an oversized, manually applied version of Ben-Day dots and thick, bold black lines that are most commonly associated with comic book printing. He also began integrating text into his paintings to even further emulate comics and other popular printed media, as well as to enable commentary to have a front-and-center position in his work. During this period, he began showing his work at the Leo Castelli gallery and others in New York City.

Later, Lichtenstein would abandon comics and pop culture as a subject matter—opting instead to update and reproduce, in his own style, pieces by Van Gogh, Picasso and more. He learned sculpting and took commissions from various brands including BMW and others before his death in 1997.

In Edward Kurstak’s portfolio of Roy Lichtenstein art for sale, you will find posters, offset lithographs and more. Contact us or visit our gallery to discover all of the Lichtenstein work we have available.