How can you take soup cans seriously? Is it possible to make high art out of low brow bits from comic books? Critics and even fans of Pop Art have laughed at the genre even as they paid homage to it. When Jonathan Jones of The Guardian recently surveyed the state of today’s art as the spawn of Pop, he asked, “Is art a profound cultural enterprise, or just a very expensive way for the rich to avoid thinking?” In The First Pop Age: Painting and Subjectivity in the Art of Hamilton, Lichtenstein, Warhol, Richter, and Ruscha, Hal Foster tries to bring thinking back to Pop Art by arguing that it began with thinking—specifically, the same kind of thinking that could save art today. For Foster, Pop Art isn’t about the soup cans. Instead, Pop is about affirming painting at the same time it challenges painting to remain relevant to today’s world. Please come over to Picture This at Big Think to read more of "Is it Finally Time to Take Pop Art Seriously?"
[Image: Roy Lichtenstein. Torpedo Los, 1963.][Many thanks to Princeton University Press for providing me with a review copy of The First Pop Age: Painting and Subjectivity in the Art of Hamilton, Lichtenstein, Warhol, Richter, and Ruscha by Hal Foster.]