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Collections Artist’s Studio No. 1 (Look Mickey)

Collections Artist’s Studio No. 1 (Look Mickey)

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Image
Courtesy Walker Art Center
Rights
© Estate of Roy Lichtenstein

Copyright

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Title
Artist’s Studio No. 1 (Look Mickey)
Date
1973
Dimensions
unframed 96.125 × 128.125 × inches
Materials
oil, Magna, sand on canvas
Location
Not on view

Object Details

Type
Paintings (Paintings)
Accession Number
1981.3
Inscriptions
not signed front back covered; N.A.
Physical Description
Room interior with Lichenstein paintings on the wall;
Credit Line
Gift of Judy and Kenneth Dayton and the T. B. Walker Foundation, 1981

curriculum resource Roy Lichtenstein, Artist’s Studio No. 1 (Look Mickey) (1973) Walker Art Center, 2002

“It was hard to get a painting that was despicable enough so that no one would hang it–everybody was hanging everything. It was almost acceptable to hang a dripping paint rag, everybody was accustomed to this. The one thing everyone hated was commercial art; apparently they didn’t hate that enough, either.”–Roy Lichtenstein, 1963

Roy Lichtenstein began producing Pop Art paintings–based on the imagery of consumerism and popular culture–in the early 1960s, and he is most often associated with paintings and prints based on comic strips. When once asked how he selected his images, the artist explained, “I go through comic books looking for material which seems to hold possibilities for painting, both in its visual impact and the impact of its written message. I try to take messages which are kind of universal … completely meaningless or so involved that they become ludicrous.”

Although not based on an actual comic-book image, Artist’s Studio No. 1 (Look Mickey) is stylistically similar to Lichtenstein’s cartoon translations. Following a centuries-old tradition in Western art in which artists use their own studios as subject matter, he depicts his artistic environment and acknowledges his accomplishment as an artist by including examples of his pioneering works such as Look Mickey (1961) and Couch (1961). However, unlike other more traditional representations of artists’ studios, Lichtenstein satirizes his own work by painting the space in the impersonal comic-strip style that made him famous.

Text for Roy Lichtenstein, Artist’s Studio No. 1 (Look Mickey) (1973), from the curriculum guide So, Why Is This Art?, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, 2002.

Copyright 2002 Walker Art Center

object label Roy Lichtenstein, Artist’s Studio No. 1 (Look Mickey) (1973) Walker Art Center, 1998

Roy Lichtenstein began producing Pop Art paintings–based on the imagery of consumerism and popular culture–in the early 1960s, and he is most often associated with paintings and prints based on comic strips. When once asked how he selected his images, Lichtenstein explained, “I go through comic books looking for material which seems to hold possibilities for painting, both in its visual impact and the impact of its written message… . I try to take messages which are kind of universal or, in a way, either completely meaningless or so involved that they become ludicrous.”

Although not based on an actual comic book image, Lichtenstein’s Artist’s Studio No. 1 is stylistically similar to his cartoon translations. Like the numerous artist’s studio paintings produced in Western art since the 16th century, Lichtenstein depicts his artistic environment and acknowledges his accomplishment as an artist by including examples of his pioneering work, such as Look Mickey (1961) and Couch (1961). Unlike other, more traditional depictions of artists' studios, however, Lichtenstein satirizes his own artwork by painting the studio in the impersonal comic strip style that had made him famous.

Label text for Roy Lichtenstein, Artist’s Studio No. 1 (Look Mickey) (1973), from the exhibition Selections from the Permanent Collection, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, December 8, 1996 to April 4, 1999.

Copyright 1998 Walker Art Center