The 20th century was very good to me. I became an aristocrat of the spirit. I did not get rich making rich people richer. I stayed poor on purpose buying time and selling thoughts. There are moments this month while diving into the Lichtenstein history when I feel very sad for the nice man that fame attached itself to. Lucky people discover along the way that love and health (physical and mental) is everything that matters. Love of life, a woman, man, a child—career and money are vehicles to take you back and forth to love. Attach yourself to the vehicle and wind up making paintings for sale.
There are a thousand reasons artists fail financially, yet only one reason to remain an artist. Certainly Roy understood this at some point in his life. Art for gain is a runaway train. A very bad choice of vehicle. I paint every day but I would never work like Roy Lichtenstein if it kept luring me away from the holy tree limb of August, 1995.
This is a study for a larger oil painting to come. In 1958 (and today) The Oswegonian was a student run newspaper printed weekly and distributed campus wide. The quote in the title is from the article, “English Club Elects New Officers and Enjoys Panel on Romanticism”.
Would Roy like my romantic painting looking west into a January setting sun?
Probably, but he wouldn’t tell. Abstract expressionism was his thing on this date. He might have gone home, rushed up to his “studio” and fought the urge to be happy with desperate stokes of ugly. Fame and seed of fame are nasty critics. I can only imagine the false negativity surging through a man incapable of seeing the honor bestowed upon the teacher of eager innocence. Art is goodness, and Roy abandoned the teaching of it for fame. Rather, the seed of fame.
Oh fame, babe, they’ve taken everything and just twisted it Oh fame they say You never could have resisted it What’s in a name? And everybody’s jaded by fame
Oh fame again The press has gone and made another mess of it Oh just because they got So much invested in it But they say you’re to blame it’s your own fault ‘Cause you got mixed up in fame
Oh no don’t believe none of that old Andy Warhol guff It takes a lot more than 10 or 15 minutes That’s just not enough To qualify you for
Fame, you went beyond the boundries of your sanity And every day you defy All the laws of gravity You ain’t got no shame ‘Cause you’re just addicted to fame
Well no don’t you buy none of that old Andy Warhol stuff (rough) It takes a lot more than 10 or 15 minutes Man, (yeah) it’s just not enough To qualify you for
Fame, they’re already settin’ up, settin’ up your own Watergate, Watergate Oh fame, that stalker out there is just filled with hate You’ll never be the same ‘Cause everyone’s corrupted by fame
Oh fame, that took away, too away all my humanity Oh fame got to fight Every second of the day for my dignity It’s a spectator’s game And there ain’t nothing fair about fame
Oh no, oh fame, say it again, yeah, yeah, yeah Oh fame say it again Fame, say it again, fame, fame, fame They say you’re to blame ’cause you got mixed up in fame, fame, say it again, fame