Blues

  • Adolph Gottlieb, Blues, 1962, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Woodward Foundation, 1977.128

Luce Center Label

In the late 1950s, Adolph Gottlieb started his "burst" paintings, a series of works that showed smooth, round areas of color above vigorous brushstrokes and splatters. This method brought together the two main currents of abstract expressionism: the soft tones of color field painting and the dramatic gestures of action painting. The black shape at the bottom of this image reflects the artist's movement as he applied paint in one wide, twisting brushstroke. In contrast, the shades of blue above blend softly from light to dark, as if he used slower, more careful brushstrokes. Gottlieb played with opposites, painting pairs of shapes that evoke dualities such as night and day, sun and earth, and male and female (Alloway and MacNaughton, Adolph Gottlieb: A Retrospective, 1981).

Luce Object Quote
"The idea that painting is merely an arrangement of lines, colors, and forms is boring." Gottlieb, quoted in The New Decade, Exhibition Catalogue, Whitney Museum of American Art, 1955
Title
Blues
Artist
Date
1962
Location
Not on view
Dimensions
48 1/8 x 36 in. (122.3 x 91.4 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of the Woodward Foundation

Mediums
Mediums Description
oil on canvas
Classifications
Keywords
  • Abstract
Object Number
1977.128
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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