Robert Indiana, LOVE (the Original), 1967
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LOVE (the original), 1967
39 x 38 x 1.5" Framed
34" x 34" Artwork
Published by Multiples, Inc., New York . Printed by Sirocco Screenprinters, New Haven, Connecticut, under the supervision of Ives-Sillman, Hamd, pub.
Hand signed on the recto; bears the artists official printed signature and copyright on the verso
a bright strong impression; some scuffing, scratches and minor imperfections visible up close; an approx. 2" stain lower recto
This is an extremely rare hand-signed, numbered and copyrighted Proof (unnumbered from the edition of 100) of the original most iconic LOVE silkscreen created in 1967 by the legendary artist Robert Indiana . This is the original, most classic, desirable, and rare of the entire LOVE series - now one of the most popular images in the world. It is based on the painting LOVE from 1966, at the Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indiana. According to the catalogue that accompanied a 1969 Robert Indiana Graphics exhibition featuring another example of this 1967 silkscreen: "This is the basic LOVE with the colors of 'Earth' and 'Sky' transposed, which becomes the 'Lake Love' (since the blue is contained within the o) as opposed to the 'Sky Love.'" For true fans, collectors and dealers of Robert Indiana's works on paper, if you are seeking the original classic and most uncommon signed limited edition Sixties LOVE screenprint, this is it.
Originally designed as a Christmas card commissioned by The Museum of Modern Art in 1965, LOVE has appeared in prints, paintings, sculptures, banners, rings, tapestries, and stamps. As the Masterworks catalogue of the Museum of Modern Art, which owns an impression of this historic print, notes, "Full of erotic, religious, autobiographical, and political underpinnings—especially when it was co-opted as an emblem of 1960s idealism— LOVE is both accessible and complex in meaning." (Deborah Wye, p. 166)
This very image was chosen as the cover image for the Catalogue Raisonne of Robert Indiana's prints (Sheehan, 1991). It was also chosen to represent the artist at the historic 4. documenta Kassel Exhibition of 1968. Indeed, it is one of the most recognizable Pop Art prints ever created.
There was a larger signed edition of 250 of this 1967 work with full margins. However, separately, Robert Indiana also created this more dramatic version without margins in an extremely limited edition of only 100 signed Proofs, of which this is one. In fact, he had intended to create this version, printed to the edges of the sheet, in an unsigned version of 2,275 to be affordable and for the masses. From that larger, unsigned edition, Indiana created only 100 signed Artist's Proofs, including this one piece (sometimes annotated AP, according to Sheehan) - hand-signed and stamped by the artist with his unique copyright - and not intended to be mass marketed. Thus, the work offered here is from that extremely rare and elusive signed limited edition with the image printed to the edges of the sheet.
This is a chance to own a piece of Pop Art history!