1923 - 1997
Painting in a Gold Frame
Original lithograph in nine colours
850 × 600 mm (33 ½ × 23 ⅝ in.)
Signed and dated: "83" in pencil
Framed Dimensions:1060 x 790 mm. (41 3/4 x 31 1/8 in.)
Further information:Note this work is also known as 'Against Apartheid' as Lichtenstein donated all the proceeds of sale to the charity which he founded to help fight discrimination (see note below).
One of the most significant and unique themes of Lichtenstein's art in the early 1980's was focused on his interest in the idea that the elements that make up a picture, that is the brushstrokes, the paper, the frame and even the glass in the frame could, by being removed from the context of the total work, become the elements of another separate study about surface, spatial location and description of form. The prints of this group are often referred to as the 'paintings series'. One of the most fascinating aspects of these works is the use of the reflections seen on the glass of the original picture. Lichtenstein interpreted these through a re-creation of free abstract swirls of form and colour.
The work here is a part of this unique and fascinating investigation into 'dual reality' at a period which is one of the highpoints of Lichtenstein's art. It was drawn in Paris rather than in New York, working at the Atelier Maeght-Lelong studio. In 1983 Lichtenstein was very concerned about the Apartheid situation. He decided to use this work to promote a whole series of other prints by fellow artist friends that could be sold so that the proceeds going to the charity, also supported by the United Nations, which would provide aid to sufferers from the Apartheid policies. The resultant series of prints, known by the title 'Against Apartheid', were exhibited and sold all over the world and a set was finally presented to the South African Government in 1996.