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Pop Art

             Pop art took over the culture of the 1960s and became intertwined with the lifestyle of its time more than any other aesthetic movement of the 20th century. In London in 1957 the screenprint workshop Kelpra Studio was founded. It began as a commercial shop printing posters for organizations such as the British Arts Council and quickly became a magnet for artists interested in exploring the screenprint's capacity for coupling photographic elements with vibrant colors. English artist Richard Hamilton was among the first to convert to this medium. Richard Hamilton is considered the father of Pop art because of his early collage, which offered a critical commentary on the world of conspicuous consumption.
             Pop Art first emerged in Britain as part of the general Pop movement. In 1963 the Beatles had three number one hits in Britain and their American tour the following year would establish Britain as the dominant world leader of youth culture. In the mid 60s boutiques opened in cities throughout Britain and soon became popular with the youth because of the inexpensive trendy clothing they sold. The interior of these shops was dimly lighted and pop music played loudly the whole time. From British and American pop music and the commercial adoption of the hippie movement came the language and culture of "flower Power" which, all together, influenced commercial art, fashion and the experimental furniture of a number of designers.
             In America, teens realized that they no longer wanted to live in the same interior space decorated by their parents. They began to become more independent and wanted their personal spaces to reflect that. Teens started decorating their rooms with posters and owned items like records and record players. Young people could be found hanging out by jukeboxes and going to drive-in fast food outlets that were newly designed just for them. Artists such as Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and Claes Oldenburg popularized Pop Art in America with some of their works.

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