Roy Lichtenstein's artistic practice has always been fuelled by a simultaneous yearning for innovation and retrospection. Shortly after establishing himself as a trailblazer of Pop Art, the artist turned his attention to the conventions of landscape painting. Lichtenstein worked on his Landscapes, Moonscapes and Seascapes for over three decades. As part of this extensive project, he completed several autonomous portfolios.
Ten Landscapes was created in 1967 and presents a grouping of fictitious nature scenes. The ten-part suite transforms traditional landscapes into striking superimpositions of flat colour fields and calculated shapes. Landscape 4, for instance, utilises a distinct pop aesthetic in its representation of a sunrise. Lichtenstein composes his early morning vista out of regularised black stripes and a gradation of dots. He splits his vignette-style composition in the middle using a defined horizon line.
The resulting illustration is highly graphic, planned and executed with the help of preparatory drawings and an opaque layer of prismatic Rowlux sheets. The print scales its landscape back to its most essential pictorial elements. It is evident that Landscape 4 revises the formal qualities of the landscape genre by the means of commercial printing methods. Its unmodulated colours, limited forms and synthetic materials all signify the tone and texture of mass-produced imagery.