NYC retrospective reassesses LOVE artist's work

Published on NewsOK Modified: September 26, 2013 at 12:06 pm •  Published: September 26, 2013
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But Haskell said Indiana's work is more conceptually layered than that of a Roy Lichtenstein comic book image or an Andy Warhol Marilyn Monroe silkscreen.

"There are myriad interpretations you can make on any one of his works." she said.

Among his earliest works are anthropomorphic figures made from wood salvaged from warehouses that were being torn down in his lower Manhattan neighborhood in the early 1960s.

His themes are American. Some works consist of stenciled lettering that reference words or phrases from classic American literature. Others address racism as in his powerful Confederacy Series — four paintings in which he uses stars to identify cities where violence occurred during the civil rights movement.

But there's LOVE, too.

There's a LOVE painting in the form of a cross and a small aluminum model that served as a template for all his other LOVE pieces. And there's the Electric Love, a monumental sculpture with tiny electric lights that move up and down until the entire piece glows — a psychedelic throwback to the days where it all started.

Around the globe, there are nine monumental LOVE sculptures, all original, in different colors and some slightly different in size. They are in New York, Philadelphia, Indianapolis, Bentonville, Ark., Scottsdale, Ariz., New Orleans, Singapore, Tokyo and Taipei, Taiwan.

"It's quite staggering," Indiana said of the exhibition, which will travel to the McNay Art Museum in San Antonio on Feb. 5. "I can't believe I did all this work. I should be exhausted, and I am exhausted."

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