Robert Longo, Untitled (Men in the Cities)

Robert Longo (American, born 1953)

Untitled (Men in the Cities), 1976/2009

Medium: Set of two gelatin silver prints

Dimensions: each 50.8 x 40.64 cm (20 x 16 in); overall 50.8 x 81.28 cm (20 x 32 in)

Edition of 10: Hand-signed and numbered

Condition: Very good

In stock

Robert Longo‘s diptych Untitled (Men in the Cities) was significantly influenced by cinematic death scenes, characterized by bodies in dramatic convulsion. The concept originated around 1975 in Buffalo and further developed when Longo moved to New York with Cindy Sherman in 1976. The series began with photographs of Longo’s friend Kevin Noble, who mimicked death scenes from films. Later, in New York, Longo captured dynamic poses by throwing objects at his models, creating a sense of movement and tension. These photographs were then transformed into drawings, with Longo using an overhead projector for tracing, often modifying clothing, poses, or body types to enhance the rhythm and abstract notations of movement.

Robert Longo, an influential contemporary artist born in 1953 in Brooklyn, New York, is renowned for his photographically based works that often delve into themes of power and authority. Utilizing motifs such as guns, jet fighters, and flags, Longo’s art resonates with a potent commentary on contemporary society. His alignment with the Pictures Generation, a movement known for appropriating images from mass media, adds a layer of cultural critique to his work. Robert Longo‘s ability to transform the intimate practice of drawing into monumental-scale paintings is a hallmark of his narrative prowess. His use of chiaroscuro, skillfully playing on contrasts between light and dark, serves as a primary tool in creating visually striking pieces. This technique, combined with his expertise in sculpture, photography, film, printmaking and drawing, gives his artworks a distinctive, multidimensional quality. One of Robert Longo‘s most famous works, the Men in the Cities series, created in the 1980s, catapulted him to fame. This series features larger-than-life drawings of business people in fantastical, contorted positions, offering a poignant critique of modern humanity’s condition. It exemplifies Longo’s signature fusion of various artistic mediums and highlights his ability to weave social commentary into visual art. Longo’s work adeptly balances personal expression with social awareness, mirroring and critiquing the world around us. His artworks are not just visually compelling but also serve as reflections on contemporary cultural and political landscapes. Robert Longo has held a series of influential solo exhibitions throughout his career, including showcases at renowned institutions like the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Robert Longo, Untitled (Men in the Cities)

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