Close Look

A Hamptons Art-World Love Affair (Told in 20 Lichtenstein Masterpieces)

A Hamptons Art-World Love Affair (Told in 20 Lichtenstein Masterpieces)
Roy Lichtenstein's Nude With Abstract Painting (1994)

The Pop artist Roy Lichtenstein is famous for capturing slices of modern life in his signature sprays of Ben-Day dots, exploring adult themes through the visual idiom of comic strips. But... did you know that if you piece together his individual paintings, they tell a story? And not just any story, but a heartbeat-quickening tale of love, art-world ambition, intimacy, and betrayal—all in the sun-swept playground for the wealthy known as the Hamptons?

Here, below, for the first time, is the romantic saga, told across 20 Lichtenstein masterpieces.

Masterpiece 2 by rlMasterpiece, 1962

New art-world power couple Brad (Yale MFA '14) and Vicki head to East Hampton, hope in their hearts. Roberta has praised Brad's latest show. The Horts bought one.

lich summer 2Girl With Ball, 1961

Fun in the sun on Gin Lane. Hi, Larry! Hi, Michael! Hi, Anthony! Hi, Robert! Hi, Simon! Hi, April! Hi, Adam!

The whole art world's here.

lich nude beach ballNudes With Beach Ball, 1992

Later, private fun in the sun. Funny, no one here is talking about the art market.

lich nightNight Seascape, 1977

Night arrives. It's time for bottle service, Ed Tyler Nahem's outdoor movies, the Parrish Midsummer Gala and...

lich nudeNude With Abstract Painting, 1994

"I'm posing just like Ilona!"

lich explosion'Whaam!', 1963

Vicki didn't have to fake it this time. Maybe she never will have to again.

lich breadMustard on White, 1963

She makes lunch for Brad, and eats a sandwich. These behaviors are rare for a gallerina.

lich engagedThe Ring (Engagement), 1961-62

Brad proposes! True love. Great manicure.

lich happy girlShipboard Girl, 1965

On the ferry to Sunset Beach, Vicki rejoices. All the girls at the Sotheby's Institute will be so jealous.

lich at arlesBedroom at Arles, 1995

 Brad heads to his Red Hook studio to prep for the summer group show Ryan's curating...

lich summer 3 where's brad?M-Maybe, 1965

...and doesn't return.

Lich alohaAloha, 1962

At a Perrotin opening, he meets Aloha. Her summer home is Gstaad. Her winter home is Moloka'i. She likes Brad's... brushstrokes. 

Kiss V, 1964Kiss V, 1964

Eventually, Brad returns to Amagansett, but it's too late.

lich break upForget It, Forget Me, 1962

His love affair with Vicki, and Pop Art, is over. (This is in part due to her change to an unattractive hairstyle.)

lich art wordReflections: Art, 1988

Brad reveals he's moved into text art now. Vicki is stunned. Vito approves—but will Schjeldahl?

lich drive backIn the Car, 1965

The ride back to Manhattan is tense and long. Thank God Vicki has the comforting leopard stole her father gave her for just such situations. 

lich girl dreaming of bradThinking of Him, 1963

Brad's fall show at Deitch will go on to be a tremendous success. Vicki never forgets him.

lich sculptureHead With Blue Shadow, 1965

Someday, his biographers will simply call her "That Hamptons Girl."

lich sunriseSunrise, 1965

There's always next summer. 


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