Pop Art and Richard Hamilton

This paper discusses the Pop Art movement; Richard Hamilton, the father of this movement; and his collage, “Just What Is It That Makes Today’s Homes So Different, So Appealing?.

This paper explains that Pop Art uses images of consumerism and everyday objects, often placing mundane objects in bizarre situations as a form of social commentary. The author points out that, although Andy Warhol is perhaps the best-known pop artist, Richard Hamilton, born in London during the 1920s, created the first piece of Pop Art, ?Just What Is It That Makes Today’s Homes So Different, So Appealing??, a collage poster design for the ?This Is Tomorrow? art exhibit. The paper describes the author?s attempt to reinterpret this collage by using images of the latest technology of our era — the plasma TV, the DVD player, the PlayStation ? just as Hamilton?s collage shows the latest technology of his era — the reel-to-reel, the television.
I experienced some particular problems in creating my collage. Hamilton’s background in advertising and the arts gave him an incredible skill for cutting out the magazine photos, and although the proportions are somewhat skewed, he was able to piece the individual photos together in an almost seamless fashion, creating a completely believable new world. In my collage, the scissors lines are obvious, and there is not the artistic flow of the created environment. The models in my collage do not have the creepy Outer-Limits air about them, and the sense of discord within a stable environment that Hamilton captured simply is not there in my collage, which does not have a proper sense of chaos or stability. It is an important lesson to be learned, however, that even if presented with the same basic supplies, it is the artistic skill and merit of the artist that creates a true piece of art. Simply incorporating similar themes into a piece does not necessarily make those pieces companions or comparable. Hamilton had an incredible sense of the impact of the media and consumer-based society on the individual, and it was due to his own brilliance that his collage is impressive, not just, because he found pretty pictures in magazines.”