(1923-1997), who briefly taught at Ohio State before moving in then 1950s to
Cleveland where he worked as a window-display designer for a department store, an industrial designer and a commercial-art instructor, was “one of the most influential and innovative artists of the second half of the twentieth century,” writes Avis Berman. “He is preeminently identified with Pop Art, a movement he helped originate, and his first fully achieved paintings were based on imagery from comic strips and advertisements and rendered in a style mimicking the crude printing processes of newspaper reproduction. These paintings reinvigorated the American art scene and altered the history of modern art. Lichtenstein’s success was matched by his focus and energy, and after his initial triumph in the early 1960s, he went on to create an oeuvre of more than 5,000 paintings, prints, drawings, sculptures, murals and other objects celebrated for their wit and invention.
Whaam!and Drowning Girl are generally regarded as Lichtenstein’s most famous works, with Oh, Jeff…I Love You, Too…But… arguably third. His Masterpiece was sold for $165 million in January 2017. WCPN’s David C. Barnett interviewed Lichtenstein about his Cleveland years.
Roy Lichtenstein in front of one of his paintings at an exhibition in Stedelijk Museum. Photo by Eric Koch.