Fine Art PRints: Robert Indiana

Politics and Patriotism in Fine Art Prints

American fine print artists have created some of the most powerful political and patriotic works in history. Shepard Fairey just jumped into the political fray with a new campaign poster.

Fairey’s work is tame in comparison to the print that Andy Warhol made when the Democratic party asked him for a contribution to George McGovern’s 1972 presidential campaign against Richard Nixon. Instead of a portrait of McGovern, Warhol chose to create a diabolic portrait of Nixon underscored with the hand-written message, Vote McGovern. Nixon won, but Warhol’s work, for sale at Vertu, is still one of the most powerful campaign posters in political history.

We tend to think about Pop artists as rebels in their day, and they were. But many of those same artists served in the Armed Forces during World War ll and the Korean War. That experience shaped their experience as artists and, in some cases, allowed them to continue their art education through the G.I. Bill.

Roy Lichtenstein was in the army from 1943 through 1946. He was worked as a draftsman and artist for the army. Lichtenstein was stationed in Europe, where he was exposed to great European art and artists. He was one of the artists who went to school under G.I. Bill and received a Master of Fine Arts from Ohio State University.

Lichtenstein did pilot training during his stint in the Army. His screenprint, Salute to Aviation, won a Purchase Award at the Brooklyn Museum’s 17th National Print Exhibition in 1970. It’s available for sale in our gallery at this time.

American artist Robert Earl Clark chose to call himself Robert Indiana, a tribute to the state in which he was born and raised. After a stint in the Air Force during the late 1940s, Indiana attended the Art Institute of Chicago under the G.I. Bill. His 2008 HOPE silkscreen was reproduced on T-shirts and other merchandise and netted more than $1million for the Obama campaign.

Indiana, at age 87, secludes himself, and his chihuahua, in his home in the coastal town of Vinalhaven, Maine. He he’s stayed out of politics since the 2008 election. When asked about the recent presidential campaigns by a Guardian interviewer, Indiana said, “I have, right in front of me as I sit talking to you, a Mexican friend of mine. He’s a chihuahua. And he’s very disturbed and very depressed watching TV. He’s sure that Trump guy is going to do away with chihuahuas.”

Jasper Johns, one of the greatest American painters and printmakers served in the army during the Korean War. Johns’ American Flags and maps are iconic images. Johns was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011.

We have several of Jasper Johns prints for sale at Vertu. One of our favorites is Periscope, which showcases his extraordinary use of color and design and his skill as a printmaker.

It’s not easy to imagine Robert Rauschenberg, a rebel in the art world, taking orders from anyone, but Rauschenberg was drafted and served in the Navy toward the end of World War ll.

His work includes images of and homages to iconic American people, places and events.

Rauschenberg created his Stoned Moon Series in 1969, the year of America’s first successful moon landing.  He was invited to Cape Canaveral, by NASA, to witness the launch of Apollo 11. The prints and writings he did in Stoned Moon Series indicate how profoundly affected he was by the event.

The Rauschenberg prints for sale at Vertu are distinctly American and attest to Rauschenberg’s skill as both a fine artist and printmaker. Artists have influenced the way we look at the world and the world has influenced the art they produce.


Robert Rauschenberg Prints: Beijing and Black Mountain

Robert Rauschenberg’s prints and paintings continue to be a source of joy and inspiration to art enthusiasts around the world. His 1/4 Mile or 2 Furlong Piece is going to be exhibited at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing from June 12 through August 21.

Rauschenberg Prints and the Beijing Connection

Rauschenberg exhibited his work at the National Art Museum in Beijing in 1985, as part of the Rauschenberg Overseas Cultural Interchange (ROCI) program, which Rauschenberg believed could bring positive social change to the world.

The influence of his world view can be seen in two of the Rauschenberg works for sale at Vertu. Rauschenberg produced the Seven Series collages, representing seven Chinese characters. They were created in collaboration with papermakers at the Xuan Paper Mill in Jingxian, China. Each collage is done on thirty-ply paper and a layer of silk. The Chinese character on each piece is done in pulp relief. Rauschenberg applied images from posters that he found in Shanghai and overlaid them with thin, transparent paper. The collages are finished with gold leaf. A cloth medallion completes each work. The Seven Character Series became part of the 1985 ROCI CHINA exhibition.

The Continuing Influence of Black Mountain College

More of Rauschenberg’s work is included in an exhibit at the Hammer Musem at the University of California, in L.A. through May and will then travel to the Wexner Center for the Arts at Ohio State University in Columbus, in September. The show is called, Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933-1957. It’s a look at the incredible achievements and the impact that Black Mountain College had on the arts.

Black Mountain College was founded in 1933 by John A. Rice, a South Carolina-born Rhodes Scholar and educator, who ruffled many feathers in conservative southern colleges. After he was asked to resign from Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, Rice founded Black Mountain College in Asheville, North Carolina.

Rice wanted students to have a well-rounded education that included both art and science. The college was owned by the faculty, which included Buckminster Fuller, who created his first successful Geodesic Dome at Black Mountain, Merce Cunningham, who founded the Merce Cunningham Dance Company at Black Mountain, John Cage, who taught music and produced multi-media theater pieces, artist Josef Albers, who had fled Nazi Germany after the closure of the Bauhuas and Robert Motherwell, one of America’s finest artists, whose prints are for sale at Vertu.

At Black Mountain, students like Rauschenberg were encouraged to participate in all of the arts and sciences, collaborate with their fellow students and guide their own curriculum

The wide range of experience that Black Mountain students, like Rauschenberg, received allowed them to explore a wide variety of interests.

Looking at the Rauschenberg print, Statue of Liberty and the mixed media Publicon Station Vl, both available in our gallery, it’s easy to see the influence of Black Mountain College and other avant-garde influences in Rauschenberg’s life.

Contact Vertu Fine Art Gallery to find out more about Robert Rauschenberg prints, Robert Motherwell works for sale and the other fine artists whose work is available in our gallery.

Shepard Fairey prints for sale

Shepard Fairey: From the Eiffel Tower to Jail in Detroit

In the past few weeks Shepard Fairey has brought awareness to Paris and controversy to Detroit.

For the COP21 World Climate Change Conference in Paris, Fairey created Earth Crisis, the first art installation ever placed in the Eiffel Tower. The work is covered in floral patterns and drawings that depict threats to the world’s ecology.

Fairey told Forbes magazine, “I hope that when people see the project they feel several things. I intentionally designed it to have a connection to things from nature that appeal like floral, decorative motifs, mandalas that suggest harmony but woven within that are several cautionary images. I hope my piece has many dimensions just like the world does.”

His trip to Paris included an exhibit at the Galerie Itinerrance, with Shepard Fairey prints for sale and works on display.

Now the controversy surrounding Shepard Fairey in Detroit:

Fairey completed a giant mural on the One Campus Martius building in downtown Detroit.

While Fairey was in Detroit, doing the commissioned mural, he told the Detroit Free Press, “I still do stuff on the street without permission. I’ll be doing stuff on the street when I’m in Detroit.”

Fairey did some stuff on the street without permission, and the city of Detroit estimates that cleanup and restoration of the sites, where he stuck up posters, will cost the city more than $24,000.

Fairey’s case will go to trial in January. According to the Detroit Free Press, “Fairey, 45, faces a count of malicious destruction of a building $20,000 or more, a 10-year felony, as well as two counts of malicious destruction of a railroad bridge, which are 4-year felonies.”

The Detroit Pistons staff sent an open letter to Fairey, with a possible solution to make all parties happy. They suggest he replace the Andre the Giant face on his commissioned mural with the face of the Piston’s center, Andre Drummond.

Hopefully, the outcome will be positive for both Fairey and the city of Detroit. The Shepard Fairey prints for sale at Vertu have the quality and fine artistry that defines his work. These serigraphs are limited editions, each with a deco feel and the messages that Fairey places in his art work.

If you’re interested in Shepard Fairey prints for sale, or any of the other art in our gallery, please stop by or contact us.

View More Shepard Fairey Prints for Sale

Free Ebook: How to Identify and Buy Fine Art Prints

Free Ebook: How to Identify and Buy Fine Art Prints

We believe that the more you know, the more you will appreciate fine art prints.

In our Ebook you’ll learn:

  • A short history of prints from the earliest woodcut to contemporary processes
  • Which artists most influenced the making of fine art prints
  • What questions to ask when buying prints
  • The fundamentals of print identification
  • Terms and techniques for identifying fine art prints
Learn More