Brushstroke with Spatter, 1966
Oil and magna on canvas
172.7 x 203.2 cm (68 x 80 in.)
Barbara Neff Smith and Solomon Byron Smith Purchase Fund, 1966.3
In 1961 Roy Lichtenstein began to make paintings inspired by images found in newspapers and comic books. He employed benday dots—which were used in printing to create tonal areas—to mimic the depersonalized mode of mechanical reproduction. Brushstroke with Spatter belongs to a series of paintings from the mid-1960s in which Lichtenstein turned from mass culture to fine art as his subject matter. Rendered in the same comic-book style as his earlier paintings, these lively pictures parody Abstract Expressionism, isolating, on a huge scale, its basic elements—the brushstroke and spatter or drip—in a crisp, deadpan manner that negates the very ideals of spontaneity and feeling associated with the style.