Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Near Speedway: Ad Reinhardt

While many other artists have made black paintings,
the first one I thought of when I saw these
 shiny black marks on the pavement 
was Ad Reinhardt. An Abstract Expressionist,
Reinhardt was intensely sensitive to 
subtle variations of color.
When his exhibition of black paintings 
was first shown at the Museum of Modern Art
in 1963, patrons were shocked.  
The artist explained,
"There is a black which is old
and a black which is fresh.
Lustrous black and dull black,
black in sunlight and black in shadow."*
It is fairly safe to say that old and fresh black, 
along with lustrous and dull,
can be found in the above picture.

Abstract Painting. Oil on canvas, 1963.
Gift of Mrs. Morton J. Hornick to
the Museum of Modern Art, New York 
*The notes above were adapted from the Museum of Modern Art website.


dive said...

Chip that out of the pavement and ship it over, Speedway. I'd gladly hang it on my wall.

I remember staring for hours at Rothko's black paintings at Tate modern a few years back. They were anything but black and seemed so deep they went on forever. Beautiful and almost spiritual.

William Kendall said...

I wonder if any of his work ended up at our gallery. We have some paintings that feel very much in that vein.

Speedway said...

Hi, Dive! I love the depth and subtlety of Reinhardt's paintings, too! They sort of speaks to the way I see multiple colors in just about everything. There's a painting at the IMA, just bout 3 x 3 ft, that appears to be just a blue painted square. But it's not; it's just looks like a gazillion thin layers of various shades of blue-range paint. The result is a depth like the ones you experienced w/the Reinhardt paintings.

Hi, William. I don't know. Perhaps you could do an on-line search of your museum's collection. Here, we seem only to have a "black" lithograph that, of course, isn't.