Delving Deeper through the Landscape of Signs

"Interpretation is the revenge of the intellectual upon art." - Susan Sontag
Reminder! Visual Analysis Due October 26!
Reading Reports?
Robert Arneson, John with Art, 1964.












Structuralism = philosophical approach that analyzes society by looking at cultural phenomena, particularly signs, that have hidden underlying meanings that can be decoded
"Blam" source material
The Cuban Missle Crisis
Roy Lichtenstein, Blam, 1962.











Drowning Girl
Drowning Girl detail
Benday dots = printing process that uses two or more solid colored dots that the eye combines to create another color
more on Lichtenstein's form
Roy Lichtenstein, Drowning Girl, 1963.











Brillo boxes
Andy Warhol, Brillo Boxes, 1963. Reproduced 1969.











Pop Art was Anti-Greenbergian Formalism

  • Openly disdained Ab Ex celebration of the individual
  • Embraced low art and kitsch
  • Rejected the preciousness of the painting
Andy Warhol in The Factory silkscreening Brillo Box





















Brillo Pad ad
Campbell's Soup ad, 1940s











Gold Marilyn

Andy Warhol, Gold Marilyn Monroe, 1962.











Marilyn's death reported in overseas newspapers 1962
Niagra billboard, 1953











Marilyn Monroe's Lips

Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe's Lips, 1962.











Woman and Bicycle

Willem de Kooning, Woman and Bicycle, 1952 - 1953.











Andy Warhol, Saturday Disaster, 1964.

viewing Saturday Disaster












Andy Warhol, Silver Car Crash, 1963











I Love You with My Ford

In spite of their popular imagery, Pop art betrays an interest in formal aesthetics
  • Large scale makes representational images abstract-like
  • Allover compositions
  • Strategic use of technique and materials
James Rosenquist, I Love You with My Ford, 1961. 82" X 93".











James Rosenquist, I Love You with My Ford, 2003. Collage.

F111 Source material












James Rosenquist, F-111, 1965. 10' X 86'.


James Rosenquist designed the eighty-six-foot-long F-111 to wrap around the four walls of the Leo Castelli Gallery, at 4 East Seventy-Seventh Street in Manhattan. He began the painting in 1964, in the middle of a turbulent decade marked by the escalating Vietnam War. Funded by citizens' tax dollars, the F-111 fighter-bomber plane was being developed as the USA's newest, most technologically advanced weapon. Rather than celebrate its military might, Rosenquist used the plane as a symbol of the economic implications of war. As it flies "through the flak of consumer society," he later explained, the jet's sharply pointed fuselage pierces superimposed images of commercial products and references to war, such as the bullet-shaped hair dryer floating above a young girl's head and the atomic mushroom cloud frozen behind a beach umbrella. Through its expansive network of colliding visual motifs, unfolding across twenty-three panels, F-111 questions what the artist has described as "the collusion between the Vietnam death machine, consumerism, the media, and advertising." Its jumps of scale, surprising juxtapositions of fragments of imagery, and vivid palette exemplify Rosenquist's singular contribution to Pop art in the United States. - Art Daily January 25, 2011











F-111 installed at MoMA, 2011