Crying Girl by Roy Lichtenstein

Crying Girl is one of Lichtenstein’s earliest comic style pop art prints using his unique incorporation of the Benday dot. In the early 1960s, Lichtenstein produced several “fantasy drama” paintings of women in love affairs with domineering men causing women to be miserable. These works served as prelude to 1964 paintings of innocent “girls next door” in a variety of tenuous emotional states.






16 x 24 in


Offset lithograph on lightweight, white wove paper




Crying Girl by Roy Lichtenstein

Roy Lichtenstein takes a modernist perspective of the picture plane by utilizing a method of commercial design through comic strips and advertisement. Lichtenstein integrates the readymade quality of screen prints and integrates a painterly gesture with the use of thick lines, flat surface planes, and obscured perspective.

Crying Girl is one of Lichtenstein’s earliest pop art prints, when he adopted this style. He was working in the ’40s and ’50s in a more abstract style, a style that was more common in America at that time, and it wasn’t until the early ’60s when he’d come back to New York that he developed into this comic book style using this dot pattern, which is known as a Benday dot, to create his scenes. This print was described as being among those that “don’t lower art to the level of the comic strip but raise the comic strip to the level of high art”

Roy Lichtenstein’s early appropriation of the aesthetics of American popular culture made him integral to the development of Pop art. Roy Lichtenstein was a student of the work of Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, and Paul Klee, Roy Lichtenstein incorporated elements of contemporary art theory and popular print media into his painting. In 1961 Roy Lichtenstein began to replicate the Benday dot system used in mass-circulation printed sources such as comics, newspapers, and billboards; this would become a signature element of Roy Lichtensteins painting and sculpture. By mimicking this industrial method and appropriating images from high and low culture, Roy Lichtenstein’s work realized a broader accessibility that had not yet been achieved in contemporary art. Roy Lichtenstein’s most recognizable series evolved from imagery drawn from popular culture: advertising images, war-time comics, and pin-up portraits, as well as traditional painting genres.

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