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I was fortunate to visit The Art Institute of Chicago to see the Roy Lichtenstein Retrospective. The museum is located in the Loop area and very close to the imaginative green space also known as Millenium Park.  I captured this shot below on the evening I arrived in Chicago. I love the strong graphic impact of the woman in the evening lighting framed by the architectural lines and curves of the museum.

I visited the actual Roy Lichtenstein Retrospective on Monday, the Memorial Day holiday. It was crowded but still manageable and became quite a pleasant visit. I spent about two and a half hours there – about two for the exhibit and a half hour in a couple of other wings. I would have stayed longer but they were closing. In fact, I would have been happy to stay the whole day there!  The Art Institute of Chicago is huge. I think they are the second largest art museum in the United States.

Most folks associate Mr. Lichtenstein’s art with Andy Warhol and the whole pop art movement but the exhibit managed to guide you through his whole creative process. Not all his pieces were parodies of commercialism or of the “distressed woman” theme. The following pictures of his actual work were taken with my camera phone so excuse the subpar quality. Here is one of his first works prior to his Pop stardom:

BELOW: The themes here are probably more familiar to most people.

It’s actually been a while since I viewed contemporary works of art. In San Francisco, I typically visit the Fine Arts Museums which are the de  Young Museum or the Legion of Art. They have “modern” exhibits as well but most contemporary art in San Francisco is on view at the SFMOMA. On the topic of contemporary artists, I like Mark Rothko and Richard Diebenkorn but have no idea where most of their important works are available to view.

When I return to Chicago, I plan on scheduling more time at the Art Institute. They also have a lovely garden area outside of the museum where I spotted a Henry Moore sculpture.