This fall, two low-key museums are serving up big-name art of the highest order.
Pop goes the easel! “It’s a quintessential Pop Art moment,” says curator Bethany Montagano of Reverie, 1965, by Roy Lichtenstein, one of more than 70 of the artist’s print works on view at the Skirball.
While LA’s mega-museums are no strangers to art-world attention, two of the city’s less mainstream institutions are crashing the art party with knockout exhibitions.
In “Pop for the People: Roy Lichtenstein in L.A.,” running October 7 through March 12, 2017, the Skirball Cultural Center (2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., LA, 310- 440-4500) chronicles the NY artist’s pivotal time in LA, particularly his collaboration with print shop Gemini G.E.L. The 70-plus works on view illustrate, in fine-art fashion, LA’s mid-century “print renaissance,” says associate curator Bethany Montagano. By focusing on pop culture and printing multiple editions of each work, Lichtenstein helped democratize art by making it more accessible, “a social movement, in which [everyone] could participate,” says Montagano. “Lichtenstein changed the mode.”
The Bull, 1945, 4th state lithograph, by Pablo Picasso
The same could be said of Pablo Picasso, whose undersung lithographs find the light in “States of Mind: Picasso Lithographs 1945–1960” at Norton Simon Museum (411 W. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, 626-449-6840), running October 14 through February 13, 2017. The exhibition showcases 86 pieces—many on view for the first time in decades. “That we’re able to show so many prints in every state [means we can] trace the evolution of Picasso’s compositional thought,” says associate curator Emily Beeny. As Picasso himself opined, “We must show all the pictures that may be underneath the picture.”