Roy Lichtenstein launched his abstracted Mirror series in the late 1960s, concluding it in the early 1990s. His Mirrors examine the symbolic implications of mirrors in art and mythology. Historically, the object has been used to reveal complex perspectives and invisible truths. Lichtenstein’s Mirrors honour the traditions of object painting by keeping the physical appearance of the motif intact. However, the artist liberates the item from its symbolic and functional purposes.
Mirror #7, executed in 1972, mimics the stylistic attributes of an arched window. The surface of the triple domes is dominated by dense streaks of grey dots, evoking the luminosity of glass. Jagged blue and yellow lines demarcate the mirror’s framework, adding a subtle elevation to the flattened form. The curving shape and the colourful details constitute, yet also obscure the subject matter. Lichtenstein presents the item head-on, displaying the complete absence of reflections. Thus, Mirror #7 is as much a parody, as it is an illustration of a mirror.
Over the course of his career, Lichtenstein embarked on several other series dealing with vision and representation. His Water Liliesand Reflections, for instance, explore various perceptions of light and reflection. Meanwhile, Lichtenstein’s Entablatures delve further into object painting, reproducing enlarged architectural fragments as their main composition.