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A decade after creating his famous LOVE painting, Indiana created ART, an image also based on the graphic qualities of a few letters that form a short but powerful word. In keeping with his usual working method, Indiana often turned his two-dimensional work into sculptural form, as can be seen in the exhibition photo reproduced below. In 1995, in a lecture given at the IMA, he noted how much he liked his ART composition and lamented the fact that it didn’t catch on as his LOVE had.
Robert Indiana recalled seeing road signs around him everywhere growing up in Indiana. In 1954, when he moved to New York City, he found discarded commercial metal stencils in the factory lofts that served as studio-residences for young, struggling artists like himself. These events stirred him to introduce short words and numbers into his colorful, hard-edged paintings, screenprints, and sculptures. His innovative signature style is today viewed as part of America’s Pop Art movement.