Rolling Out a Rosenquist

September 12, 2011 § Leave a comment

James Rosenquist at Gemini G.E.L.

September 8, 2011

And now that we are up and running in Chelsea, our gallery drawers are once again filling up with proofs of the latest editions coming out of the Gemini G.E.L. workshop.  One new arrival is James Rosenquist’s The Xenophobic Movie Director or Our Foreign Policy.

Rosenquist and Master Printer James Reid

Rosenquist visited Los Angeles at the beginning of the year to escape New York’s dreary weather and begin his first collaboration with Gemini in over a decade.  This past summer, the workshop had the pleasure of hosting the artist’s daughter (and current Rhode Island School of Design art student) Lily Rosenquist, for a brief printmaking internship, and in January, Master Printer James Reid was eager to begin collaborating with the elder Rosenquist.

The imagery in this new print references a 2004 painting of the same title measuring over 13 feet.  Given the scale of this lithograph, 58” in length by 25″ high, several of the colored lithographic plates had to be split into more than one plate in order to facilitate consistent hand-printing.  Rosenquist mixed each color ink to his exact specification, and this complex print was resolved with 18 runs through the press.

(Photographs by Sidney B. Felsen © 2011)

Always engaged with social and ecological issues, Rosenquist has paired iconic symbols of the American landscape with references to world affairs, reiterating his message by the hand-written title across the lower margin.  Rosenquist’s printmaking continues to illuminate the artist’s highly-charged, deconstructive style and vibrant coloring with an airbrushed quality, derived from his experience as a billboard painter.  This impressive lithograph made its public debut at Art Basel 42 and can be viewed in our gallery at 465 West 23rd Street.

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