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Black Grey Beat

1964 Gene Davis Born: Washington, District of Columbia 1920 Died: Washington, District of Columbia 1985 acrylic on canvas 90 3/4 x 187 in. (230.5 x 475.0 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift from the Vincent Melzac Collection 1980.6.15 Not currently on view


Exhibition Label

The Museum of Modern Art included Black Grey Beat in a groundbreaking 1965 exhibition The Responsive Eye. The curator, William Seitz, placed Davis among the color imagists [who] are poetic, even romantic in approach," freely choosing bold colors for their "billboards."

Gene Davis: Hot Beat, 2016

Artwork Description

Color Field Painting emerged in the United States in the 1950s. The movement is characterized by pouring, staining, spraying, or painting thinned paint onto raw canvas to create vast expanses of color. These works — by artists such as Gene Davis, Helen Frankenthaler, Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland, and Jules Olitski — are considered crowning achievements of postwar American abstract art. Washington, DC, washome home to a number of these artists who became known as the Washington Color School. The Smithsonian American Art Museum has one of the largest collections of Color Field painting in the world.

Smithsonian American Art Museum: Commemorative Guide. Nashville, TN: Beckon Books, 2015.

Keywords

Abstract - geometric

painting

paint - acrylic

fabric - canvas

About Gene Davis

Born: Washington, District of Columbia 1920 Died: Washington, District of Columbia 1985

More works in the collection by
Gene Davis