Acrylic, oil, graphite pencil on canvas
61 1/4 x 48 1/4 in. (155.6 x 122.6 cm)
Signed and dated verso, upper left: rf Lichtenstein / '69
Classification: painting

Painting

In this catalogue paintings are classified as follows:

Painting is a work with acrylic and/or oil on canvas or on another two-dimensional support (canvas board, wood panel, etc.)

Painting (mural) is a large-scale painting, historically called "mural"

Painting on paper describes a work in acrylic, oil or watercolor on paper or board

Dates

Lichtenstein usually signed and dated a painting on the verso around the time it was finished, inventoried or shipped to a gallery or storage. Some pre-Pop paintings were dated in code (e.g., RLCR 502). 

See also: 8. DATES

Media Lines

Described are all media visible on a painting's recto. Paint is listed first, followed by graphite pencil where present, followed by the support. An inscription's medium is given beneath the media line if different from the painting media.

Acrylic and Oil Paints

The painting media lines in this catalogue are rarely based on technical analysis by a museum or a conservator. They are mostly informed by conversations with the artist's studio assistants, by examination of paint jars and tubes that were kept after the artist's death and by RLF records or Leo Castelli Gallery files. 

In this catalogue, all types of acrylic paint are listed as "acrylic" and all types of oil paint as "oil."

Historically, the brand name "Magna" (acrylic dispersion paint by Bocour Artist Colors, Inc.) has been used to describe all of Lichtenstein's acrylic. RLF records and technical analysis by art museums confirm that the artist did not only use Magna, but at times Liquitex acrylic emulsion paint and, later, Golden Artist Colors acrylic dispersion paint. When Magna production stopped in c. 1990, Lichtenstein bought up large amounts of Magna. He also reached out to Golden who worked with him to devise custom MSA colors in Lichtenstein's hallmark hues.      

Pop paintings and later works were usually painted with both acrylic and oil. It is assumed that around 1962 Lichtenstein experimented with Liquitex and Magna before adopting Magna as the main medium. For paintings from 1962–63, media lines are informed by notes on RL Studio Cards and/or in the Leo Castelli Gallery inventory. In rare instances, media lines were written by the artist on the verso of a work (e.g., RLCR 691). For paintings from 1964 and beyond, solid colors are assumed to be acrylic and dots and diagonals are assumed to be oil. Lichtenstein preferred oil for stenciled patterns because it was slow drying (fast-drying Magna stuck to stencils and resulted in stray paint strands) and because, if corrections were needed, oil could be removed with solvent without disrupting the acrylic underneath. However, it is possible that Lichtenstein continued his experimentation with paints through and after 1964.

Graphite Pencil Underdrawing

A closer look at Lichtenstein's paintings reveals that graphite pencil underdrawing and palimpsest is visible in most of them, starting in the 1960s. Nevertheless, pencil has not historically been mentioned in the related media lines. Due to the artist's well-known intention that his work not appear "too finished," this catalogue includes pencil in media lines. If in question from examination report results or other documentation, the presence of graphite pencil is assumed. When a researcher's examination report confirms that pencil is not visible, it is not included. 

Painting: Other Mediums and Techniques

Canvas
Different types of canvas are not described. Lichtenstein favored #10 cotton duck canvas from New York Central Art Supply; he also purchased duck canvas from U.S. Art Canvas and possibly others. Circular and oval canvases were ordered from David A. Paul and New York Central Art Supply. Earlier paintings' canvases are typically finer and sometimes described as "linen" in studio records.

Sand
In the Imperfect/Perfect and Entablature paintings, grainy areas are visible. Lichtenstein created this texture by adding beach sand, usually to a thick white underlayer over which he applied the final color. 

Sgraffito
This reductive technique of line-making is found in about 25 pre-Pop paintings. 

Stretchers
Stretchers are not included in media lines. Anco and H. Cole stretchers, among others, are used in Lichtenstein’s pre-Pop paintings; Sgroi Canvas Chassis stretchers are used in paintings from the late 1960s through early 1970s. Lebron stretchers were standard beginning around 1972 (a different stretcher brand was introduced once and quickly abandoned).

Strip frames
Strip frames are not included in media lines. Slightly raised above the edges, strip frames served as practical protection during shipment and storage movements and were routinely added to paintings in Lichtenstein’s studio by the 1970s, but are documented in exhibition installation images as early as the early 1960s.

Painting on Paper: Other Mediums and Techniques

Masking out
Masking techniques are indicated, but the material used (e.g., frisket, small objects) is not identified (e.g., RLCR 219).

Watercolor application
When it is applied in multiple ways, watercolor application method is described, otherwise brush is implied. For example, see RLCR 365, “Watercolor, brushed, smudged by hand and sprayed, with masking out, graphite pencil on paper." 

Dimensions

Painting dimensions are given from canvas edge to canvas edge, excluding original wood strip frames nailed to the edges. 

For multi-panel paintings, if panels are joined, overall dimensions and dimensions of each canvas are given. If panels are separate, only panel dimensions are provided since overall dimensions vary by installation. Lichtenstein usually suggested a distance of approximately 7 inches between canvases for installation. This fact informed spacing of related images in the catalogue entries (e.g., RLCR 1635). 

See also: 10. DIMENSIONS

Signature, Inscriptions, Marks

The artist usually signed and dated his paintings on the canvas verso in charcoal and applied a spray fixative before sending it to a gallery or storage.  

Pre-Pop paintings are often signed or initialed on the recto in oil, or inscribed with the artist's name and other tombstone information on the stretcher or tacking margin. 

See also: 11. INSCRIPTIONS

Read more: Guide to the Catalogue
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Catalogue entry

Artwork: Mirror # 1 (Oval 60" x 48"), 1969 (RLCR 1695)
RLCR 1695 (LC 976; RL 0997)
Mirror # 1 (Oval 60" x 48")
1969
Title Source
RL Studio Card
Alternate titles and sources: Mirror (RL Studio Photograph); Mirror #1 (Castelli); Mirror I (RL Studio Photograph); Oval 60" x 48" "Mirror #(1)" (RL Studio Photograph)
Media
Acrylic, oil, graphite pencil on canvas
Dimensions
61 1/4 x 48 1/4 in. (155.6 x 122.6 cm)
Inscriptions
Signed and dated verso, upper left: rf Lichtenstein / '69
Research Images
Mirror # 1 (Oval 60
Detail
Provenance
Gian Maria Pellion di Persano, Turin, Italy, 1970 (via Leo Castelli Gallery, New York City; via Gian Enzo Sperone, Turin, Italy)
Mr. and Mrs. S. I. Newhouse Jr., New York City, May 1984 (via Gian Enzo Sperone, Turin, Italy)
Douglas S. Cramer, Los Angeles, May 1985 (via Leo Castelli Gallery, New York City)
(Sotheby's, New York, November 14, 2001, sale N07726, lot 7)
The Eli and Edythe L. Broad Collection (The Broad), February 2002, B-LICH-2P02.01 (via Gagosian Gallery, Los Angeles)
Exhibitions
Sala de Arte, Estudios Generales, Universidad de Puerto Rico Mayagüez, Mayagüez, Puerto Rico, Roy Lichtenstein y el arte pop, April 1–May 1, 1970 (Crespo 1970a, front cover b/w ill. [dated 1970]).
Castelli-Feigen-Corcoran Gallery, New York, Group show, November 14–December 12, 1981.
Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati, Extended Loan, June–October 18, 1985, 26.1985.
Mary Boone Gallery, New York, Roy Lichtenstein: The Mirror Paintings, October 21–November 18, 1989 (Mary Boone Gallery 1989, b/w ill. [as Mirror: 60" by 48" [Oval #1]], front and back cover b/w ill.).
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Roy Lichtenstein: A Retrospective, October 7, 1993–January 16, 1994 (only New York, Los Angeles, Montreal) (Waldman 1993b, no. 142 n.p. facing p. 183 b/w ill.). Traveled to: Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Calif., January 26–April 3, 1994; Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal, Montreal, May 26–September 5, 1994; Haus der Kunst, Munich, October 13, 1994–January 9, 1995 (included early works) (Waldman 1994, no. 142 n.p. facing p. 183 b/w ill.); Deichtorhallen, Hamburg, Germany, February 8–April 30, 1995 (included early works) (Waldman 1994, no. 142 n.p. facing p. 183 b/w ill.); Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, June 2–September 3, 1995 (included early works) (Waldman 1994, no. 142 n.p. facing p. 183 b/w ill.); Wexner Center for the Arts, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, September 21, 1995–January 7, 1996 (abridged version) (Waldman 1994, no. 142 n.p. facing p. 183 b/w ill.).
Fondation Beyeler, Riehen, Switzerland, Roy Lichtenstein, May 24–September 27, 1998 (Beyeler [Fondation] 1998, no. 28 p. 62 b/w ill.).
Chiostro del Bramante, Rome, Roy Lichtenstein, Riflessi/Reflections, December 20, 1999–April 2, 2000 (only Rome) (Waldman 1999, no. 6 p. 62 b/w ill.). Traveled to: Padiglione d'Arte Contemporanea, Milan, April 20–June 25, 2000; Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg, Wolfsburg, Germany, September 16, 2000–January 21, 2001 (as Roy Lichtenstein: Spiegelbilder, 1963–1997) (Waldman 2000a, fig. 11 p. 19 b/w ill.).
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, Jasper Johns to Jeff Koons: Four Decades of Art from the Broad Collections, October 7, 2001–January 6, 2002 (not Los Angeles; not in cat.) (Barron and Zelevansky 2001). Traveled to: Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., March 16–June 3, 2002; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Mass., July 28–October 20, 2002; Museo Guggenheim Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain, February 15–September 7, 2003.
Louisiana Museum of Art, Humlebaek, Denmark, Roy Lichtenstein: All about Art, August 22, 2003–January 18, 2004 (only London, Madrid) (Holm, Tøjner, and Caiger-Smith 2003a, no. 30 n.p. b/w ill.). Traveled to: Hayward Gallery, London, February 26–May 16, 2004 (as Roy Lichtenstein); Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, June 24–September 27, 2004 (as Roy Lichtenstein) (Holm, Tøjner, and Caiger-Smith 2003b, no. 30 n.p. b/w ill.); San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, Calif., October 20, 2004–February 22, 2005 (as Roy Lichtenstein) (Holm, Tøjner, and Caiger-Smith 2003b, no. 30 n.p. b/w ill.).
Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Roy Lichtenstein: A Retrospective, May 16–September 3, 2012 (Rondeau and Wagstaff, Sheena 2012, no. 94 n.p. b/w ill.). Traveled to: National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., October 14, 2012–January 13, 2013; Tate Modern, London, February 21–May 27, 2013 (as Lichtenstein: A Retrospective) (Dunne 2012); Musée National d'Art Moderne, Centre National d'Art et de Culture Georges Pompidou, Paris, July 3–November 4, 2013 (as Roy Lichtenstein, revised and reorganized) (Dunne 2013); (Pompidou 2013, p. 43 b/w ill.); (Morineau 2013a, no. 37 p. 138 color ill.).
Literature
Crespo, Ángel. "Roy Lichtenstein y el arte pop." Revista de arte/The Art Review (Universidad de Puerto Rico, Mayagüez), no. 5 (June 1970), back cover b/w ill.
Sperone, Gian Enzo. Jim Dine, Roy Lichtenstein, Morris Louis, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Robert Rauschenberg, Mario Schifano, Frank Stella, Cy Twombly, Andy Warhol. Turin: G. E. Sperone, 1975, b/w ill.
Cowart, Jack. Roy Lichtenstein 1970–1980. New York: Hudson Hills Press in association with the St. Louis Art Museum, 1981. Exhibition catalogue (1981 St. Louis Art Museum), p. 21 b/w ill. [not exhibited].
Cowart, Jack. Roy Lichtenstein 1970–1980. Translated from the English by Nicolas Hepp. Munich: Prestel Verlag, 1982. Exhibition catalogue (1981 St. Louis Art Museum), no. 6 p. 21 b/w ill. [not exhibited].
Cowart, Jack. Roy Lichtenstein 1970–1980. Translated from the English by Stefania Coppi. Florence: Electa, 1982. Exhibition catalogue (1981 St. Louis Art Museum), p. 23 b/w ill. [not exhibited].
Cowart, Jack. Roy Lichtenstein 1970–1980. Tokyo: Seibu Museum of Art, 1983. Exhibition catalogue (1981 St. Louis Art Museum), p. 17 b/w ill. [not exhibited].
Hendrickson, Janis. Roy Lichtenstein. Cologne: Benedikt Taschen, 1988, p. 75 b/w ill.
Busche, Ernst A. Roy Lichtenstein: Pop-Paintings, 1961–1969. Schirmer's visuelle Bibliothek 6. Munich: Schirmer/Mosel, 1989, no. 41 n.p. b/w ill.
Hayat, Yves J., ed. Art Collectors. Vol. 1. Paris: Éditions Numero 5, 1990, p. 56 color ill. (in collector's home).
Hindry, Ann, ed. Artstudio. Special issue, Roy Lichtenstein, no. 20 (Spring 1991), n.p. preceding p. 152 b/w ill.
Vernissage Köln. Special issue, Roy Lichtenstein in München, no. 9 (September 1994), p. 34 b/w ill.
McKenzie, Michael. "The World According to Roy." SunStorm/Fine Art (New York) (Spring 1994), p. 36 b/w ill.
Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York. Roy Lichtenstein Reflected. New York: Mitchell-Innes & Nash, 2010. Exhibition catalogue (2010 New York Mitchell-Innes & Nash), p. 46 b/w ill. (flopped), [not exhibited].
Bader, Graham. Hall of Mirrors: Roy Lichtenstein and the Face of Painting in the 1960s. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2010, no. 3.25 p. 126 b/w ill., front cover b/w ill.
Leo Castelli, New York. Reflected in the Mirror There Was a Shadow. New York: Leo Castelli, 2011. Exhibition catalogue (2011b New York Castelli), n.p. facing p. 40 b/w ill. [not exhibited].
Morel, Francis, ed. Connaissance des arts. Special issue, Roy Lichtenstein, no. 589 (July–August 2013), p. 58 b/w ill.
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