Entablature V

Entablature V
Signed Print

Roy Lichtenstein

Mixed Media, 1976
Signed Print Edition of 30
H 55cm x W 96cm

Critical Review

Roy Lichtenstein’s Entablature series of 1976 employs an intricate array of printing methods. The works in this series were manufactured with the help of handcrafted stencils based on photographs, combined with machine made foil elements. The resulting prints offer unusual colour schemes and lavish finishes.

In his Entablatures, Lichtenstein draws from images depicting the facades of 20th century buildings around New York City. The monumental architectural elements applied in the Entablature series provide the artist with ready-made designs. Lichtenstein’s presentation of the chosen ornamental features is reductive and repetitive, remarking on historical conventions dictating architectural uniformity. It is also a sly criticism directed at Minimalism’s push for the repetition of impassive forms above all else.

Entablature V combines dark matte blue screen printed and lithographed areas, debossed with glossy silver and black architectural motifs. The work is increasingly graphic and gives the impression of the surface of the off-white Rives wove paper being adorned by actual raised reliefs. The horizontal arrangement of the ornamentation suggests that the abstracted patterns continue beyond the printed sheet. In this sense, the disposition resembles the continuous flow of the ornamentations found on real life facades.