May 11--A work by American pop artist Roy Lichtenstein has been donated to the Honolulu Museum of Art.
Lichtenstein's 1995 relief sculpture "Woman Contemplating a Yellow Cup" was donated by Thurston and Sharon Twigg-Smith, trustees of the museum and longtime supporters of contemporary art in Honolulu. It is now on view in the European and American temporary exhibition gallery.
"This work now anchors our 20th-century collection," museum Director Stephan Jost said in a statement. "Lichtenstein defined the pop art movement and held a mirror up to American society, reflecting our consumer culture."
Lichtenstein is best known for using the style of comic strips in his art. One of his most famous works -- "Whaam!" -- depicts a jet fighter gunning down a rival. He was also known for using Benday dots, most commonly used in newspaper printing.
"Woman Contemplating a Yellow Cup" shows a woman's head, seen slightly from behind, as she looks into a room furnished with a painting, carpet and a table setting, including a yellow cup. Red dots of various sizes and color intensities figure prominently in the work.
James Jensen, the museum's curator of contemporary art, wrote in a news release that the work creates "interesting, dynamic spatial ambiguities" and that it shows "Lichtenstein as a master artist at the pinnacle of his career."
The wall relief formerly was displayed prominently in the Twigg-Smiths' home. "I already miss it," Sharon Twigg-Smith told the museum. "I miss the conversation with her every morning. It's a special piece, and I hope everyone enjoys it as much as we have."
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