Reflections On Crash from 1990 belongs to Roy Lichtenstein’s Reflections series. The sequence takes the artist’s popular designs and disrupts them by seemingly depicting them through a glass lens. As opposed to a simple concept of ‘theme and variation’, the Reflections series also plays with Lichtenstein’s favoured ideas of light and reflection.
The partly hidden images in this sequence are altered and obscured by the fractions of stylised glass, pushing them to the point of abstraction. The subjects are glimpsed between sharp mirrored shapes that break and refract the surface of the image. Harsh lines cut across the composition and result in the layered effect of various pictorial planes, creating a deceptive sense of depth.
The figures themselves are also recognisable from some of Lichtenstein’s most iconic works, and each of the Reflections prints references one of the artist’s signature motifs. Similar to As I Opened Fireof 1966, Reflections On Crash references a comic book war scene, displayed beneath a printed frame with reflections on its surface. Lichtenstein adds green and orange for a more varied tonal range. The narrative is interrupted by the shards of reflective glass, and the text is partly covered, challenging the beholder to decipher the composition beneath.