Tom Wesselmann was an American pop-artist whose claim-to-fame came from his well known collages. Wesselmann graduated from the prestigious Cooper Union institute. At Cooper Union Wesselmann began to study art in the context of New York. Wesselmann’s first series, Great American Nude, was primarily created in 1961 and gained him great recognition in the art world. The series is painted with a limited palette of colors and portrays patriotic ideas and themes. This series achieved such recognition and fame that Great American Nude No. 48 was Wesselmann sold in 2008 for over 10 million dollars. Though his work can’t exactly be defined as Pop Art, critics in the 1960s included him in the rising group. This was done much to Wesselmann’s dismay. Soon after Great American Nude, Wesselmann began to work on a series called Still Life. His next two subject studies became Bedroom Painting, and The Smoker Study which later helped develop the Mouth series. Throughout the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s Tom Wesselmann continued to produce work until his death in 2004. Wesselmann has been featured in shows at The MOMA and the Whitney.
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