Andy Warhol. Gold Marilyn Monroe. 1962. Silkscreen ink on synthetic polymer paint on canvas, 6' 11 1/4" x 57" (211.4 x 144.7 cm). Gift of Philip Johnson. © 2010 Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

In 1955 the influential critic Clement Greenberg published the essay, “American-Type Painting,” hailing the anti-mimetic and monumental canvases of Abstract Expressionist artists as the most advanced form of painting then practiced. That same year, the twenty-five-year-old artist Jasper Johns painted an American flag, a familiar, iconic emblem. Rendered in wax encaustic and augmented with collage, the work’s tactile, painterly surface and allover compositional structure engaged the visual language of Abstract Expressionism while pointing in a new direction.

On to Pop features familiar objects and images we encounter in our daily lives. In addition to a flag, there are stockings, comics, and movie stars—in works by Roy Lichtenstein, Claes Oldenburg, Andy Warhol, and others. Collectively these artists came to define American Pop art, a very different kind of “American-type” painting, which by the late 1960s had eclipsed Abstract Expressionism’s dominance on the New York scene.

The exhibition is organized by Anne Umland, Curator, Department of Painting and Sculpture.

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