The Power of the Brushstroke

Visual Studies

The Power of the Brushstroke
Lichtenstein’s obsession with the minute details of painting proves there’s more craft to Pop Art than you might think.

In 1949 Life magazine published a short feature on the artist Jackson Pollock where the editors famously asked: “Is this the greatest living American painter?” The headline was both genuine and rhetorical. The article was sparked by one of Pollock’s consummate supporters, the art critic Clement Greenberg, who, by the late 1940s was the vocal arbiter of modernism and, more acutely, the promoter of Abstract Expressionism. In the profile photograph, the 37-year-old Pollock stands in front

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