James Rosenquist was one of the seminal figures of the Pop Art movement. As he did his art studies and afterwards Rosenquist supported himself by working as a billboard painter. He sometimes used leftover billboard paint to create abstract paintings in the manner of the 1950’s New York school style. In 1960 he abandoned abstract expressionism to directly engage the techniques and iconography of his commercial work. In the result he developed his own distinct style of painting that retained the kind of imagery, bold hues and scale that he utilized while he painted billboards.
In addition to painting, Rosenquist contributed to the renewal of printmaking in the United States. In 1971 Rosenquist went Graphicstudio. Graphicstudio is an art and print workshop established by Donald Saff in 1968. In the years that followed Rosenquist was a key contributor to the studio. Working with Saff and Charles Ringness, Rosenquist made the Cold Light Series in 1971.
Cold Light is in multiple public collections including the Museum of Modern Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the Tacoma Art Museum, the Rhode Island School of Design Museum of Art, the Yale University Art Gallery, the National Gallery of Australia and the Baltimore Museum of Art.
Cold Light (1971)
Composition 20 ¼ x 30 “ (51.4 x 76.3 cm) sheet 22 ½ x 30” (57.2 x 76.3 cm)
Charles Ringness, University of South Florida, Graphicstudio, Tampa
Signed, titled, dated 1971 and numbered 7/70 in pencil, along the bottom edge
Private Collection, Montreal