This original offset lithograph entitled Picasso Cufflink was the exhibition poster for the show entitled Claes Oldenburg: Object into Monument at the Art institute of Chicago, January 20- February 25, 1973. Originally designed as a potential monument for a Chicago site, the Picasso Cufflink was never built.
The exhibition showed the artist's work from the mid-1960s until the early 1970s, including proposals for monuments as drawings and small models.
Inspiration for the design for Cufflink came from The Picasso, a monumental sculpture by Pablo Picasso in Daley Plaza in Chicago. Although the sculpture puzzled many Chicagoans at the time of its unveiling in 1969, it has since become one of the most beloved and enduring public works of art in the Windy City.
Oldenburg was born in Sweden in 1930 and grew up in Chicago. After moving to New York City in the mid-1950s, he began developing a sculpture style in which he took familiar objects and gave them a different scale, shape and texture, with the result that they took on a new meaning.
In the 1960s he created soft sculptures with canvas and vinyl, making cartoon versions of everyday objects such as Two Hamburgers and Toilet. Continuing his fascination with ordinary items as sculpture, he took small objects and made them gigantic, thereby stripping them of their utility, as illustrated in this drawing for his proposed sculpture in Chicago. His work, often whimsical, has ranged from drawings and paintings to public sculptures, both mini and monumental.
In 1977 he married artist Coosje van Bruggen (1942 – 2009), who collaborated with him on many of his projects.