Smoker from an American Portrait
"Smoker, from an American Portrait" by Tom Wesselmann
Signed Serigraph printed in 1976 from an edition size of 175.
The overall size of the Serigraph is 26 x 19.5 inches.
The condition of this piece has been graded as B-: Good Condition, Signs of Handling and Age.
About the Print
Signed and Numbered 96 out of 175 in pencil by Wesselmann. Published by Transworld Art, New York on Museum Rag board. The Transworld blind stamp is in the lower left hand corner. Part of Wesselmann's evolving series of "Smokers," originally inspired by the observations of his model for another ongoing series "Mouth." Wesselmann revisited the "Smoker" image throughout the 1970s. Minor foxing throughout the border of the piece. The image, signature and numbering are unaffected. Particularly heavy spotting on the upper left hand corner.
About the Artist
American painter, sculptor and printmaker. He planned to become a cartoonist until his final year at the Cooper Union in New York. The powerful work of Willem de Kooning provided both inspiration and inhibition as he attempted to find a new direction centred around a tangible subject. Choosing the figure he began to make small collages of torn paper and found materials; these culminated in large, aggressive compositions such as Great American Nude #3 (1961; Washington, DC, Hirshhorn). These and giant still-lifes composed of common household objects and collage elements culled from popular advertising images, brought him fame and notoriety as a founder of American Pop art. In the late 1960s an increasingly dominant eroticism emerged in works such as Bedroom Painting #13 (1969; Berlin, Neue N.G.), with its more literal but still intense colours and tight, formal composition. The pictorial elements, exaggerated in their arabesque forms and arbitrary colouring, became significantly larger in scale in his works of the 1970s, such as a series of Smoker mouths; enormous, partially free-standing still-lifes moved into sculptural space, and finally became discrete sculptures of sheet metal. In the 1980s he returned to works for the wall with cut-out steel or aluminium drawings, which replicate his familiar, graceful line in enamel on cut-out metal. He was also an innovative printmaker, adapting his imagery to lithographs, screenprints, aquatints and multiples in relief. An important retrospective of his work was held in Japan in 1993–4.