James Rosenquist. F-111 (detail). 1964–65. Oil on canvas with aluminum, 23 sections. 10 x 86' (304.8 x 2621.3 cm). Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Alex L. Hillman and Lillie P. Bliss Bequest (both by exchange). © 2011 James Rosenquist/Licensed by VAGA, New York

James Rosenquist began to paint the 86-foot-long F-111 in 1964, in the middle of one of this country’s most turbulent decades. Inspired by advertising billboards and by earlier mural-scaled paintings, such as Claude Monet’s Water Lilies, he designed its 23 panels to wrap around the four walls of the Leo Castelli Gallery at 4 East 77th Street in Manhattan, where it would be displayed the following year. Rosenquist took as his subject the F-111 fighter bomber plane, the newest, most technologically advanced weapon in development at the time, and positioned it, as he later explained, “flying through the flak of consumer society to question the collusion between the Vietnam death machine, consumerism, the media, and advertising.” Its jumps of scale, collage-like juxtaposition of fragments of imagery, and gloriously vivid palette exemplify the style that defines Rosenquist’s singular contribution to Pop art in the United States. For this special installation, located outside the entrance to the fourth-floor Painting and Sculpture galleries, F-111 will be presented as it was first exhibited at the Castelli Gallery in 1965.

The installation is made possible by BNP Paribas.

Installation views

If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA's collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

If you would like to license audio or video footage produced by MoMA, please contact Scala Archives (all geographic locations) at firenze@scalarchives.com.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication or moma.org, please email text_permissions@moma.org. If you would like to publish text from MoMA's archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to archives@moma.org.

This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to digital@moma.org.