Lobby

Artist:
Richard Hamilton (British, London 1922–2011 Oxfordshire)
Date:
1984
Medium:
Silkscreen (edition 56/88)
Dimensions:
16 7/8 x 23in. (42.9 x 58.4cm)
Classification:
Prints
Credit Line:
Purchase, Reba and Dave Williams Gift, 1997
Accession Number:
1997.387.1
Rights and Reproduction:
© Richard Hamilton
Not on view
In the early 1970s Hamilton received a postcard from the artist Dorothy Iannone (b. 1933) showing the lobby of the Hotel Europa, Berlin. Fascinated by the perspectival tricks produced by the mirrored columns and geometrically patterned carpet,
Hamilton made a collaged watercolor (1974–75) after the postcard, which in turn became the basis for this print nearly ten years later. As the artist said, the lobby’s rather banal, modern decoration and strange emptiness reminded him of the setting for Jean-Paul Sartre’s existentialist drama Huis Clos (No Exit; 1944), which takes place in a hotel’s public space, “a metaphor for purgatory, the limbo in which we await transit to another condition.”
Inscription: Signed (L.L.): R Hamilton 56/88;; (L.R.) WG (pressed into paper)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Richard Hamilton: Selected Prints from the Collection, 1970–2005," December 16, 2009–May 2, 2010, no catalogue.