Guide to the Catalogue

Welcome to Roy Lichtenstein: A Catalogue Raisonné, a digital publication by the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation that is available to users at no charge. It was launched on the occasion of the artist's centennial in October 2023.   

The chapters in this guide outline the scope of our catalogue raisonné project, specify research methodology and resources used, and define the organizational principles that inform the catalogue entries.

The content on these pages was created from documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation's complete or current knowledge. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



Artwork dimensions reflect the measurements in examination reports from catalogue raisonné researchers or a trusted source, e.g., collection registrars or conservators. Requested were measurements to the artwork edges: for two-dimensional works, the longest height and width, or (for circular works) the diameter; for three-dimensional works, the longest height, width and depth. Measurements were influenced by a wide range of examination conditions and could be reported in inches or centimeters.  

Catalogue entries give dimensions in inches to the nearest 1/16th of an inch, followed by centimeters in parentheses. For very large works, dimensions are given in feet, then meters.

Dimensions are listed in the following order:

- for two-dimensional works, height by width, or (for circular works) diameter

- for three-dimensional works, height by width by depth.

If only the height is known, the abbreviation "H." precedes the measurement (e.g., RLCR 1032).

For irregularly shaped works, dimensions also reflect the longest height (x-axis) and longest width (y-axis); dimensions were never taken on the diagonal.

Support thickness (e.g., paper or board thickness) is not published.

For works with limited or no examination, dimensions follow information found in material at RLF Archives, in publications and other sources. Sources are always referenced in Remarks. No information is reflected by the comment "Dimensions unknown."


Unless otherwise indicated, dimensions refer to the overall size of the (unframed) artwork. A prefix is added when more than one measurement is given. Prefixes may also be used even when no measurement is available for the overall size of an artwork. 

Frequently used prefixes include:

Primary support for works on paper (Sheet) and board (Board)

Primary support for most paintings

Given for drawings when images are smaller than the primary support and only when they have rectangular, circular or oval borders. This decision responds to Lichtenstein's practice of planning the final size and proportion of a work from the onset, indicated by the sketched boarders. 

Not indicated are dimensions for the overall image area of irregularly shaped images, for marginalia or for extensions past images with borders. Exceptions are drawings for Imperfect Paintings in which irregular shapes define the works of this series. 

For multiple borders around the same image, dimensions indicate the borders ultimately relevant for the image. When those dimensions are unknown, only image borders with available measurements are listed.

If a drawing is partially erased, dimensions do not include erased areas. 

When a work could not be unmatted and/or unframed for examination, dimensions reflect the area of the work visible within a mat or frame. 

Frame dimensions are only given when a frame is integral to the work or in rare cases when a frame is considered to be made by the artist (e.g., RLCR 325, RLCR 655 or RLCR 1091). Strip frames are ignored in measurements.  

Other prefixes are used as needed to describe a work's components. 

Works with adjustable dimensions are listed with their full range of dimensions or with measurements of parts, as available.   

Supports and Attachments   

For works with multiple supports, measurements of each support are given.

Paintings on multiple canvases are listed with overall and individual panel measurements. When all panels are approximately of equal size, overall dimensions and approximate measurements for one panel are given. 

Attachment dimensions are included for printed paper clippings from comics, newspapers and magazines. 


Painting dimensions are given from canvas edge to canvas edge, excluding original wood strip frames nailed to the edges, which were added as protection during transport and for storage. See also: 4.7. PAINTING


Lichtenstein's outdoor sculptures are usually partially buried under foundation. Catalogue entries give only the dimensions of a work as visible above ground. 

Editioned Works 

Dimensions of the pieces within an edition tend to differ slightly due to manufacturing. Depending on a catalogue researcher's measuring method or the conditions an examination was made under, small differences in sizes of individual pieces have been a regular occurrence as well. As a result, the edition entries in this catalogue provide the dimensions documented by fabricators, listed in Castelli inventories or provided on RL Studio Cards. Alternately, measurements from the most experienced catalogue researcher or examinations under the best conditions are used. 

In the case of editioned tapestries and banners, due to greater variability of dimensions usually resulting from stretching, both dimensions from the fabricator and (in parentheses) the range of dimensions taken by catalogue researchers are given.

Dimensions of prints and posters follow Corlett 2002

Sketchbook, Notebook and Book

Binding and leaf dimensions of sketchbooks and notebooks are given in the book's umbrella entries. Works are listed with image dimensions and sometimes the measurements of attachments. Cutout dimensions are given when part of a page was removed from a sketchbook (e.g., RL 2688.19). For further information see: 4.10. SKETCHBOOK.

Binding and leaf dimensions for printed books in which Lichtenstein drew are provided along with other relevant dimensions in the entries for individual pages. 

Research Limitations 

When a work had to be measured through glazing or from a distance, the qualifier "(approx.)" (for approximate) is added after dimensions. 

In rare cases, dimensions at the time of examination or photography were smaller than dimensions originally recorded by the studio due to trimming by a framer or other circumstances. Entries then provide the dimensions at the time of examination and a related comment is added.  

At times, a photograph of the artwork served to calculate approximate dimensions. Dimensions calculated by this method are followed by the qualifier “(approx.).”