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Peter Max (American, b.b. 1937)

Comic Book Art

Throughout his career, Peter Max adeptly intertwined art and everyday life. By dealing with current events in his work, using familiar images, and creating his art in public mediums such as in murals or on postage stamps, he made art relatable for art viewers.

Max first began his artistic training as a child when his family moved to Israel. Here, he studied painting with a Viennese fauve painter, which inspired a career-long use of a bold color palette. After a short stint in Paris where Max attended art school, his family immigrated to America. Max continued to study art in New York at The Art Students League, where his work began to conform to the realist genre. After school, Max entered the commercial field where he designed award winning album covers and book jackets that combined his realist influences with the conventions of graphic art. In the 1960s, due to his interest in photographers such as Richard Avedon, Max moved into a period of photo collage work that became some of his most important works. From the 1970s on, Max began to focus more on painting, and mixed media pieces.

Throughout his career Max completed many public works including designs on Dale Earnhardt’s #3 Millennium race car, US postage stamps, and over 200 public murals including a section of the Berlin Wall.

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