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 F@#K Lichtenstein

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Joe Lee
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PostSubject: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 17, 2013 1:15 am

"Dave Gibbons, Rian Hughes, Garry Leach And More At Image Duplicator, Tonight’s Exhibition Launch Dedicated To Reappropriating The Work Of Roy Lichtenstein"....
http://www.bleedingcool.com/2013/05/16/dave-gibbons-rian-hughes-garry-leach-and-more-at-image-duplicator-tonights-exhibition-launch-dedicated-to-reappropriating-the-work-of-roy-lichtenstein/
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edquinby001

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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 17, 2013 3:15 pm

I saw a large gallery showing of Roy Lichtenstein work in the middle '70's. He may have changed his approach to art since then, but I doubt it. The paintings were all material he had glommed on to from EC comics panels and the changes he made to them largely consisted of:
scale: he blew them way up in size
media: he duplicated the printing process of comics in acrylic paints
cropping: he did crop some images and angled them somewhat differently from the originals at times.

That's about it as far as I could see. The pieces in the exhibit you linked to, Joe, to my eye are far better crafted than the paintings I saw. All that wouldn't really bother me though, all artists use some reference whether physical images or the mental notes they have made, even if they don't make an entire career of reproducing those references as Lichtenstein has done. It is his utter dismissal of the original artists and their product that is a sore point with me. He considers their work merely 'found art'. It was a throwaway article until he elevated it. It's never that he discovered a piece of pop culture work by an artist who deserved more attention because of their high quality, it's that he basically made ' something from nothing'. Well, too late to make a long story short, let me just say that I am in total agreement with your subject line, Joe!

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Joe Lee
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 17, 2013 4:44 pm

I just feel bad for the poor graphic artist who was hired to develop a label template for Campbell Soups. "We want it to be simple, iconic, trustworthy, honest, we want it to look All-american..."

Then Andy freakin' Warhol says hey lets use a Campbells Soup cans, i love Campbell soup... no other reason...
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Lawson



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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 17, 2013 4:44 pm

I like this. Smile
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Lawson



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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 17, 2013 4:46 pm

It's never been clear to me how Lichtenstein could make millions copying other artists' work and calling it his own.
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Joe Lee
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 17, 2013 5:55 pm

Lawson wrote:
It's never been clear to me how Lichtenstein could make millions copying other artists' work and calling it his own.

Arrogance, pretentiousness...
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Chris W



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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 17, 2013 11:16 pm

People looking for a fad. They don't have enough going on in their own lives, so they make a game out of what someone else can do. You can see this on Facebook with the meme "I don't always... but when I do..." I don't even know the source material, and I've added to it once or twice. Kudos to Gibbons, Leach and the others for re-appropriating art by artists who know what the hell they're doing.
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PostSubject: Art Institute of Chicago   Fri May 17, 2013 11:38 pm

Last summer I was in Chicago and visited the AIC when the Liechtenstien exhibit was there. The displays clearly showed the art and skill that he brought to his subjects, whether it was the "found" art or his original works. While it is execrable to claim that the subjects of his "enhanced" works were not art before he "found" it, it is also fallacious to assume that the enhancements were not art as well.

While both Liechtenstein's found/enhanced works and the "Before Watchmen" series were derivative, it was interesting to compare the depths of changes made to the works.
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Joe Lee
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Sat May 18, 2013 6:30 pm

ChrisW wrote:
...I don't even know the source material...

No problem...

http://davidbarsalou.homestead.com/LICHTENSTEINPROJECT.html
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edquinby001

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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Sun May 19, 2013 5:40 pm

That's a really interesting side by side comparison of Lichtenstein and his source material, Joe, especially since I'm sure Roy never intended for his work to be shown that way.

I have to admit that he has changed a little more in his works than I remembered him doing. Still, I'm not particularly impressed by the craft and quality of his paintings, but with Fine Art, everybody's mileage varies, it just doesn't do it for me. Supposedly, the work shows a fairly academic exploration of composition, color and spatial arrangement divorced from the pop culture subject matter. I really don't get it, as the subject matter is still there replete with thought and speech balloons, so they are not just design elements, you read them as well! And this criticism is from a guy who thinks that Krazy Kat really IS a great exploration of spatial arrangements.

Wonder if he was ever sued by any of the comics artists whose work he appropriated? I'll see if I can find out. he certainly liked/used a lot of work by that Abruzzo guy, I guess that's kind of a compliment!
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Sun May 19, 2013 6:03 pm

It only took a quick search to find that Roy Lichtenstein was never sued for copyright infringement during his lifetime or his estate afterwards. Joe Kubert was asked if he considered suing and replied, " everybody steals from somebody". Class act that he was, he wasn't interested in pursuing it and didn't begrudge anything either. Famous comics artist and part time hothead, Neal Adams wasn't so magnanimous and roundly cursed RL in a, for him, short rant!
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Joe Lee
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Mon May 20, 2013 2:47 pm

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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Mon May 20, 2013 3:25 pm

Exactly right, if anyone would have sued, you'd think it would have been Disney. My own guess as to why Lichtenstein got a pass from comics companies and even Disney, is that they loved the validation they thought they were getting by a Fine Artist in high culture using their characters/material. Next to Andy Warhol, Lichtenstein was the most famous of the Pop Cultural Movement and they may have thought any association with him was worth more than a legal action against him. You may have heard how excited Stan would get when a celebrity of the day, e.g. Paul Mc Cartney, would visit the Bullpen? His Soapbox that month would be almost giddy!
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Mon May 20, 2013 7:06 pm

i knew a guy back in art school who loved these guys, he said guys like warhol and lichtenstien were like those hipster bands who do covers of iconic pop songs

i never got that

but those bands take 100% of something familiar and make it new, they make their version of that song a unique experience from the original, but the new experience is dependant on the original

warhol and especially lichtenstein are taking a small fraction of a larger experience and showing it as art. Now if they were curating an exhibition of individual cartoon and comic book panels taken from their original context and presented as such. With credit and and money due given to the original artists.

They, artists like lichtenstein, are like editors taking credit for a sentence they quoted from a novel written by someone else, but lichtenstein TAKES ALL the credit


Last edited by Joe Lee on Mon May 20, 2013 8:23 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Mon May 20, 2013 7:46 pm

That was extremely well put, Joe. Can I quote you, but take all the credit myself? Wink
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Mon May 20, 2013 8:21 pm

Shocked
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Chris W



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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Mon May 20, 2013 8:31 pm

ChrisW wrote:
They, artists like lichtenstein, are like editors taking credit for a sentence they quoted from a novel written by someone else, but lichtenstein TAKES ALL the credit.


Last edited by ChrisW on Mon May 20, 2013 8:32 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : I was young. I needed the money.)
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Mon May 20, 2013 11:11 pm

affraid
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Joe Lee
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Tue May 21, 2013 12:52 am

Lawson wrote:
It's never been clear to me how Lichtenstein could make millions copying other artists' work and calling it his own.
I don't understand the fine art world at all...

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mobileweb/2013/05/16/nude-bea-arthur-painting-by-john-currin-sells-christies-auction_n_3284898.html?utm_hp_ref=arts
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Tue May 21, 2013 1:40 pm

Hah, you and me both! They showed that painting, from the neck up anyway, on the CBS Morning Show. Elder journalist Charlie Rose leaned forward to peer at it intently with squinted eyes. Nora Mac Donald called him on it and asked if he was checking Bea Arthur out. He said 'no', he just wanted to make sure it was a younger Bea than when he knew her. Compliment or no? Only Charlie knows.
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Tue May 21, 2013 2:00 pm

Does anyone remember the movie Airheads? It starred Brendan Fraser, Steve Buscemi, Adam Sandler.

A band called The Lone Rangers accidentally hijacks a radio station, and they get a ton of publicity so they play it up with outrageous demands, and one of their many ransom demands is a nude painting of Bea Arthur

I wonder if that's where this all originated?
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Peter Urkowitz

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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Tue May 21, 2013 10:59 pm

Objections all noted, but I like Roy Lichtenstein and his work.
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Thu May 23, 2013 12:09 am

Peter Urkowitz wrote:
Objections all noted, but I like Roy Lichtenstein and his work.
I like his work too, I just don't consider it to be his work Very Happy

Can I ask, what it is you like about him? He may be nice man, it's just that I have trouble separating a man from his actions, but I would have no trouble being civil with the man at a party if he were pleasant enough. But I would probably have to actively avoid certain topics in any discussions.
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 24, 2013 6:01 am

Lichtenstein's work - and I am by no means a follower, a fan, or even familiar with his output; only his reputation - works because he chose vivid pictures to recreate, and applied whatever artistic talent he had to mastering them. Andy Warhol - with whom I have a bit more familiarity - did the same thing with his silkscreens and Campbell's Soup cans. When it works, you go 'that's a really good picture.' No if's, and's or but's, it's a good picture. I leave it to the experienced artists to decide how much technical skill was really involved.

If nothing else, it was a way-station on the path to comic books becoming an accepted artistic medium. Decades later, Rick Veitch and Russ Heath incorporate the "Andy Savannah" parody into "Greyshirt", where you can almost measure the artistic ability they're bringing to bear, or Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman and Mark Buckingham resurrect Andy Warhol in "Miracleman." It's much more literary, and much more artful, and much more meaningful, but it couldn't have existed without those guys making a fortune from their silly pictures.
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PostSubject: Re: F@#K Lichtenstein   Fri May 24, 2013 9:42 pm

A lot of the history of 20th Century art was people breaking down barriers in the minds of the public. Things that had been called trash, or trivial, were put up on art gallery walls, with the declaration "This is art." We can look back now and say that was too easy, but it wasn't easy at the time.

These were derivative works, but they were also profoundly transformative. They brought to the foreground issues of color, space, composition, whereas the original comics panels subsumed all those qualities in the service of telling a story. And the paintings forced the viewers to look at these images that had been ignored before, and to think about them in a new way, as art.

Now, do I wish that Lichtenstein had properly credited the original artists? Yes, of course, I wish he had. He should have paid them a portion of his profits, even. But his artistic labor, the thought that went into it, deserves credit too.
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