Roy Lichtenstein - Editions & Works on Paper New York Tuesday, October 19, 2021 | Phillips

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  • In anticipation of his first solo show at The Leo Castelli Gallery, Roy Lichtenstein had a very important decision to make – how to invite the art world elite. Knowing this is how potential collectors would first encounter his work, he needed to make a statement. To Lichtenstein, that meant turning to the highly stylized comic book imagery pervasive in American pop culture and pushing it further to create his iconic blond woman in Crying Girl, 1963. Lichtenstein printed this edition of offset lithographs, setting side a select few of these prints to sign and preserve for sale and—almost unfathomably today—folding the rest in four as paper invitations.

    In one image, Crying Girl, with her luscious blond locks, full face of makeup, and pearl earrings, confronts the mid-century feminine ideal to reveal the struggle behind the pursuit of perfection. This print, then, perfectly encapsulates just what sets Lichtenstein apart from his predecessors and summarizes his lasting influence on Pop Art. With its striking field of benday dots, slickly mechanical style, and graphic intensity, there’s little wonder that Lichtenstein selected Crying Girl to set the stage for his first solo exhibition.

    • Provenance

      Pace Wildenstein, New York
      Pace Prints, New York
      Private Collection, Los Angeles

    • Literature

      Mary Lee Corlett II.1

    • Artist Biography

      Roy Lichtenstein

      One of the most influential and innovative American artists of the post-war period, Roy Lichtenstein ushered in the prominence of Pop Art through his high-impact representations of consumer imagery, common entertainment, and the accoutrements of contemporary life rendered in the Ben-Day dots of contemporary comic strips. Central to Lichtenstein’s practice was parody, which enabled the artist to engage with often-disparaged commercial source imagery from an ironic distance as he considered the nature of the banal and probed the boundaries of what fine art could be.


      While Lichtenstein’s early Pop work cemented his status as one of the main figures of one of the most iconic and original movements of postmodernism, he continued to develop his practice over the course of the following decades until his death in 1997. Retaining his characteristic comic style and ironic distance, Lichtenstein engaged new and disparate influences from Abstract Expressionism to Chinese landscape painting to evolve the subject of his own work and consider the contradictions of representation, style, and substance. Lichtenstein is a central figure in the 20th century art historical canon and accordingly his work is represented in the collections of major museums worldwide, including The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Tate, London; and Centre Pompidou, Paris.

      View More Works


Crying Girl (C. II.1)

Offset lithograph in colors, on lightweight wove paper, with full margins.
I. 17 1/4 x 23 1/4 in. (43.8 x 59.1 cm)
S. 18 1/8 x 24 in. (46 x 61 cm)

Signed in pencil, from an unknown edition size, published by Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, framed.

Full Cataloguing

$40,000 - 60,000 

Sold for $75,600

Contact Specialist

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212 940 1220


Editions & Works on Paper

New York Auction 19-21 October 2021