pop art

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pop art,

movement that restored realism to avant-garde art; it first emerged in Great Britain at the end of the 1950s as a reaction against the seriousness of abstract expressionismabstract expressionism,
movement of abstract painting that emerged in New York City during the mid-1940s and attained singular prominence in American art in the following decade; also called action painting and the New York school.
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. British and American pop artists employed imagery found in comic strips, soup cans, soda bottles, and other commonplace objects to express formal abstract relationships. By this means they provided a meeting ground where artist and layman could come to terms with art. Incorporating techniques of sign painting and commercial art into their work, as well as commercial literary imagery, pop artists such as Roy LichtensteinLichtenstein, Roy
, 1923–97, American painter, b. New York City. A master of pop art, Lichtenstein derived his subject matter from popular sources such as comic strips, the imagery of which he used until the early 1970s.
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, James RosenquistRosenquist, James,
1933–2017, American painter, b. Grand Forks, N.Dak., studied Univ. of Minnesota (1952–54), Art Students League, New York City (1955). An important figure in the pop art movement, Rosenquist incorporated disparate and fragmented images of everyday
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, and Andy WarholWarhol, Andy,
1928–87, American artist and filmmaker, b. Pittsburgh as Andrew Warhola. The leading exponent of the pop art movement and one of the most influential artists of the late 20th cent.
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 attempted to fuse elements of popular and high culture, erasing the boundaries between the two.


See L. Alloway, ed. Modern Dreams: The Rise and Fall and Rise of Pop Art (1988); H. Foster, The First Pop Age (2011).

Pop Art


(from “pop”—an abrupt sound, light blow, or bang that is similar to the sound made when a cork is removed from a bottle; literally, an art that has an explosive, shocking effect; interpreted also as a shortened form of “popular art”), a neo-avant-garde movement in the fine arts. Representing a unique reaction to abstract art and, at the same time, having similarities to dadaism (particularly to the art of M. Duchamp) and surrealism, pop art became widespread in the United States, Great Britain, and other countries in the second half of the 1950’s. The movement’s founder was the American R. Rauschenberg. Other American pop artists have included C. Oldenburg, J. Rosen-quist, J. Johns, R. Lichtenstein, and J. Dine. British exponents of the movement have included P. Blake and R. Hamilton.

Pop artists seek a “return to reality.” Their goals include the “disclosing of the aesthetic value” of mass-produced objects, elements of mass communications (advertisements, photographs, reproductions, comic strips), and the entire artificial and material milieu surrounding man. The artists reproduce, often by means of collage or similar techniques, commonplace objects of modern urbanized life. Such objects include household items, packaging, fragments of interiors, and machine parts. Also reproduced are popular representations of famous personalities or well-known events. Sometimes the actual objects and original representations are incorporated into the composition.

Substituting for reality a meaningless combination of diverse artifacts, pop art, like the modernist movements that preceded it, remains restricted to a narrow range of self-sufficient formal experiments. As remote as abstract art from being consistently realistic, pop art is, in essence, anti-art. To a certain extent, the movement has influenced advertisements, posters, and magazine illustrations. This shows that pop art is geared for the mass culture of capitalist society and that it undermines intellectual values.


Lifshits, Mikh. “Fenomenologiia konservnoi banki.” In Mikh. Lifshits and D. Reingardt, Krizis bezobraziia: Ot kubizma k pop-art. Moscow, 1968.
Sibiriakov, V. Pop-art i paradoksy modemizma. Moscow [1969].
Kuz’mina, M. “Pop-art.” In the collection Modernizm. Moscow, 1973.
Rublowsky, J. Pop Art. New York, 1965.
Lippard, L. R. Pop Art, 3rd ed. London [1970].

pop art

a movement in modern art that imitates the methods, styles, and themes of popular culture and mass media, such as comic strips, advertising, and science fiction
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