James Rosenquist is an American Artist who helped build the Pop Art scene in the 1960′s. He grew up in Minneapolis, winning scholarships to study art at the Minneapolis School of Art, later going to New York City to study on scholarship at the Art Student’s League. He majored in billboard painting, which helped him to incorporate large familiar icons in his pop art.
The F111 is a room sized pop art painting that caused a big sensation when it hit the art scene. This video is James Rosenequist’s commentary about the painting,. It is currently being exhibited at the Modern Museum of Modern Art in New York.
View the video and answer these questions:
1. What does the girl signify?
2. What does tax money have to do with the subject of the painting?
3. Why did he paint orange spaghetti?
4. What is the symbolism of the diver?
5. How does the viewer use his peripheral vision?
I painted the F111 in 1964. the F111 was the latest American Fighter bomber in the planning stage. Its mission seemed obsolete before it was finished. It seemed the con force of this war machine was to keep people economically employed in Texas and Long Island. At the time I thought that the people involved in this were headed for something but I didn’t know what. By doing this they could achieve two and half children, three and half cars and a house in the suburbs. In the painting I incorporated orange spaghetti, cake, lightbulbs flowers and many other things. It felt like to me like a plane, flying through the flack of an economy. The little girl was a pilot under a hair dryer, the swimmer gulping for air was searching for air during an Atomic Holocaust, I had hear that the Chinese has originally invented Income Tax as a donation of starting a community. Now that taxes were in demand, I thought that if I sold this painting that the joke would be that the buyer had already bought a real F111 with his tax money. I was concerned with peripheral vision. I wanted to specify that where ever one looked at would exist because of the peripheral vision that extends from the corner of the eye. Perhaps one would question one’s own self consciousness. In the 1960′s the painted was critically taken as a anti-war protest and there were a multiplicity of ideas that caused its existence
In April 2009 a fire in Hernando County, Florida destroyed all of Jame’s Rosenquist’s home and studio, including all paintings that were stored, including works that were slated to be exhibited in an upcoming show.