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First Stone

A work made of lithograph from one stone in black ink on cream laid paper.

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  • A work made of lithograph from one stone in black ink on cream laid paper.




Lee Bontecou (American, born 1931)
printed by Zigmunds Priede
published by Universal Limited Art Editions (American, founded 1955)

About this artwork

As its title indicates, this is the first print that Bontecou made. It was produced by drawing with lithographic crayon directly on limestone. As she described: “I was just testing things out on a stone. It was the first I’d ever done, so I just took different symbols and worked them out. I didn’t try to think of a composition. I just put it all on.”

Nevertheless, the forms—her signature black holes, cosmic bursts, insect-like carapaces, mutant sea creatures—are laid out with careful attention to the composition.

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Prints and Drawings


Lee Bontecou


First Stone


United States




Lithograph from one stone in black ink on cream laid paper


308 × 398 mm (image); 495 × 655 mm (sheet)

Credit Line

U.L.A.E. Collection acquired through a challenge grant of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Dittmer; restricted gift of supporters of the Department of Prints and Drawings; Centennial Endowment; Margaret Fisher Endowment Fund

Reference Number


Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


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