Photographer Laurie Lambrecht was Roy Lichtenstein’s part-time assistant from 1990 to 1992, hired specifically to help the artist inventory artwork in preparation for his retrospective exhibition at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, held in 1993. Encouraged by Lichtenstein, she began taking photographs in his studio as they worked together. The two artists grew close over this period of time as Lambrecht’s photographic project became a collaborative one.
Lambrecht’s vivid color images in the series “From the Studio of Roy Lichtenstein” give us a rare glimpse into the working studio of one of the twentieth-century’s most iconic artists. She reveals Lichtenstein’s objects of inspiration and creation: colored pencils, newspaper clippings, lists of onomatopoeias (including “whump” and “pow”), ladders, levels, and of course scores of his signature Ben-Day dots. And, perhaps most delightfully, we find the artist himself in Lambrecht’s work, seemingly poised in his own compositions, actually atop a ladder making final touches to his paintings.
Lambrecht describes her experience this way: “With my camera I observed what Roy saw . . . the newspaper ad of the ‘Beach Ball Girl,’ for instance. I let his signature graphic components–the stripes, dots and bands of solid colors–suggest the compositions. The texture of Roy’s paintings in all states of completion, the presence of Roy, my awareness of his stature in our cultural history–all this inspired me.”
Laurie Lambrecht’s work has been exhibited around the world, including solo exhibitions at the Lishui Photo Festival in China; galleries in London, Los Angeles and New York; and the Griffin Museum of Photography in Winchester, MA. Her work has been included in group shows at the Houston Center for Photography; the Parrish Art Museum in Southampton, NY; and the Society of Photographers, Johannesburg, South Africa. Lambrecht’s work is included in the collections of the Parrish Art Museum; the Guild Hall Museum, East Hampton, NY; the Sysco Collection; and NYU Medical Center.
This project is supported in part with funds from the Strategic Opportunity Stipend (SOS) Program through the New York Foundation for the Arts, administered on Long Island by the East End Arts Council.
Alex has written for Vanity Fair, Barrons, Bloomberg and Condé Nast Traveler.