new-york

Tom Wesselmann

Sidney Janis Gallery

Tom Wesselmann’s latest show at Janis included ten large oil paintings, eight oil studies, several charcoal drawings, and a maquette. The central works were more of his Bedroom Paintings, and nearly everything on view contained the imagery of that series—a woman’s face in a picture frame, a woman’s body foreshortened, roses, toes, an alarm clock, a perfume bottle. Wesselmann is automatically given a place among the founders of American Pop art. Furthermore, his persistent reliance on the original tenets of his style has earned him the reputation of the last of the hard-core Pop artists still working that vein. I think it’s possible that he is included among the founders only by critical default. It’s true that the most obvious aspects of his work and career make a good case for this inclusion: his hard-edge representational style; his choice of subject matter; the scale of his work; and

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