Published in 1997, this volume, the catalogue of the Roy Lichtenstein exhibition held at the Anthony d’Offay Gallery in London from 23 October to 27 November – only three weeks after his death –, contains six lithographic plaquettes of new paintings and two interviews with the artist, both recorded by David Sylvester, the influential British modern art critic of the second half of the 20th century. The first was recorded in January 1966, the second in April 1997 – a few months before Lichtenstein’s death.
The first interview was commissioned by the BBC’s Third Programme for a non-specialist audience, who might have been interested in learning about the then exciting new phenomenon called Pop Art, probably largely without ever having seen an example of it in the original, and therefore altogether more general and theoretical. The second interview is a brief collection of information about an interesting new technical development in Lichtenstein’s work; as it was to be published in the catalogue of an exhibition for a specialised audience, the interviewer assumed the reader’s knowledge of the artist’s long previous career.
Sylvester, unaware of the events, thus arrives at some considerations that, with hindsight, sound like a definitive summary of Lichtenstein’s work, which he has always claimed to have been inspired by Cubism, and likens him – perhaps unexpectedly – more to Braque and Picasso than to Gleizes and Metzinger.
Published by Anthony d’Offay Gallery, 1997
16.3 × 29 cm
6 colour plates