P07379 OFF THE CONTINENTAL DIVIDE 1974–4
Inscribed ‘James Rosenquist 1973–4’ bottom right and ‘23/43’ and ‘Off the Continental Divide’
Lithograph, printed and published by Universal Limited Art Editions, New York, 42 5/8×78 3/4 (107.3×200)
Purchased from Petersburg Press (Grant-in-Aid) 1980
Lit: James Rosenquist Graphics Retrospective (exh. catalogue), John and Mabel Ringling Museum, Sarasota, Florida, no.61
Between starting and finishing this print, Rosenquist made a large four-panel painting of the same subject, ‘Slipping off the Continental Divide’. A study for the composition is in the Art Institute of Chicago. The imagery is divided between East and West halves: a car window frame, stairs, a book and nails in fives (as in primitive counting: four strokes and a fifth across them). The artist was born in North Dakota, near the Continental Divide along the Rocky Mountains; he has said ‘the whole print is about myself... I live in the middle of the country... and I can either go West or East’ (interview in Newsday 19 May 1974, quoted in The Print Collector's Newsletter, V no.3, July–August 1974, p.66).
The Tate Gallery 1980-82: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions, London 1984