Road Before The Forest

Road Before The Forest
Signed Mixed Media

Roy Lichtenstein

Mixed Media, 1985
Signed Mixed Media Edition of 60
H 94cm x W 133cm

Critical Review

Road Before the Forest was executed in 1985 and belongs to Lichtenstein’s picturesque Landscapes suites. The work relies on poignant details, as it presents a simple image charged with complex associations.Road Before the Forest abides by its title, depicting a roadside neatly lined with a row of trees. The green and yellow branches conceal a dark forest, denoted by black, red and blue sweeps of colour. The whole scene appears to be swaying gently in the wind. Road Before the Forest unites vibrant hand-painted components with Lichtenstein’s simplistic machine-made shapes. Consequently, the layout becomes similarly abstracted as the artist’s concurrent Brushstroke Faces.

Besides dissecting the traditional features of landscape painting, Lichtenstein’s Landscapes series integrates an additional referential layer. The explosive pastel-toned and primary coloured portraits in this suite imitate the idealised brushwork of the abstract expressionists. The emotive brushstrokes mimic nature in motion, while also critiquing the authenticity granted painterly gestures in the past.

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