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Larry Rivers (born 1925)
Circle Gallery (New York)
Madama Butterfly—Metropolitan Opera, 1978
offset lithograph
61 x 91 cm (24 x 35 4/5 in.)
Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division
© 1998 Larry Rivers/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY
Courtesy of Metropolitan Opera Guild, © 1978 Circle Gallerys/Metropolitan Opera




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Biography of Larry Rivers

Born Larry Grossberg in the Bronx, Rivers started his career as a jazz saxophonist in 1940. While studying at the Juillard in 1944, a fellow student reportedly introduced Rivers to the work of Georges Braques—sparking an interest in painting. In 1948, he enrolled in the art education program at New York University and received his degree in 1951.

Rivers is a versatile artist who has worked in a wide range of media. Recognized for his interest in historical images and themes, he has also produced a number of collaborative works with other artists, including poets Frank O'Hara and Kenneth Koch and sculptor Jean Tinguely. Additionally, Rivers has designed stage sets, for Stravinsky's Oedipus Rex and for two of LeRoi Jones's plays, and worked with Pierre Gaisseau on the television documentary "Africa and I."

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