This drawing contains images of unrelated everyday objects. Oldenburg equates them formally by representing each item in similar, simplified shapes. For example, the artist makes sure to include parts of a circle in all four. He utilizes a rectangle in the Good Humor ice cream bar and incorporates a semi-circle as to resemble a bite that has just been taken in the corner. The image of the cartoon character Mickey Mouse is reduced to rectangles and circles as well. By breaking down each image into simple geometric shapes Oldenburg creates a systematic, formal relationship. Ultimately the system itself and the commercial objects are combined to create a visual puzzle for the viewer and the artist. The title refers to play between formal elements that, through the artificial artist-created system, can evoke a large body of disparate images. Oldenburg commented on this piece: “The family relation of my subjects becomes evident. Drawings in this manner attempt to establish a lineage, binding my choices together into a ‘house’.”
© Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen, 2005




Production date



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30.7 x 24cm.


Pencil and crayon on chequered paper

Object number

A 36800