LIFE: Bang! Zap! Pow! It's art!
…So last weekend we jetted up to Eugene to get some "cult-chah" and attend a kids' fest up there, and I swung by the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art at the University of Oregon to see a fab new show they've got of work by pop artist Roy Lichtenstein.
It was a good show, about 70 pieces, and reminded me of the Warhol show I saw there last year. I've always admired Lichtenstein's pop work, but like most I'm the most familiar with his "comic book-inspired" (some would say rip-offs) paintings. There's something kitschy and cool about those, but I also liked the chance to see some of Lichtenstein's other work at the show, his more abstract and avant-garde side.
The stark, "coloring book" style of some of his illustrations is confrontational and strange, especially when they're on paintings 5 feet across. It's almost like taking a peek into some alternate, Jack Kirby-created dimension. The benday dots that are a big part of Lichtenstein's style help create that otherworldly feeling. Its very fakeness makes it seem more real. Or am I just lapsing into pretentious critic-speak? Whatever – I likes it.
I rather liked pieces like this one, "Brushstrokes," right, that show the artist's style breaking down into its component parts. One of the exhibition's most interesting images was a six-part series showing a cow being slowly disassembled into fractal linework, like vision blurring.
But of course, you can't go wrong with a good ol' fashioned pop art explosion, either!
(All art (C) etc. Roy Lichtenstein estate, honest.)