Known for his impressive use of color, light absorption, and reflection, Gary Lichtenstein is a master of printmaking. His work has been shown and collected by various noteworthy institutions, such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian, the Chicago Art Institute, the Boston World Art Fair, and Art Asia in Hong Kong. The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum recently displayed a retrospective of Lichtenstein’s work, spanning the course of his thirty-five year career. The show beautifully captured his love for abstract expressionism through the visual impact of color, and the history of his collaboration with over ninety artists internationally, from San Francisco to Beijing.
Lichtenstein began his career dedicated to the medium of screen printing, in which one coats a mesh screen with emulsion, lays the screen over a transparency of an image, and exposes the image to light, allowing the image to burn into the emulsion. Passing ink over the screen with a squeegee and pushing the ink through the screen in the areas where the emulsion was burned results in the final work. Lichtenstein’s experimentation with screen printing emerged simultaneously with the popularity of artists like Andy Warhol, who largely contributed to the market for screen prints. Lichtenstein has since experimented with unique, large-scale screen prints on canvas, reminiscent of Helen Frankenthaler’s ethereal stains. He is now the owner of Gary Lichtenstein Editions, a studio dedicated to producing limited edition prints.