Tom Wesselmann, oil on canvas, 1975
Tom Wesselmann is one of the key figures in American pop art, known for his earliest collages on canvas. Radiators, towels, wallpaper and other domestic objects were the precursors that occupied his interiors with his American nudes as still lifes. Typical of Wesselmann’s later drawing and painting style were the close-up representations of body parts or objects, with which he creates the feeling of enlargement and deprives spatiality. In his Great American Nude series, female models were reduced to formal contour lines as if they were mere sexual objects of desire. The presence of seductive stimulants, such as a flower, cigarette or perfume, remains iconic for his work.
During the period of his ‘Study for portrait of nude’ his oeuvre took a turn. His nudes were given faces more often and he started experimenting with cut-out canvas. This portrait attests to these changes and clearly characterizes the style of the artist’s hand.
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