Monument to Sound

Media - 1985.65.21 - SAAM-1985.65.21_1 - 52064
Copied Raymond Jonson, Monument to Sound, 1936, pencil on paper mounted on fiberboard, sheet: 20 5826 18 in. (52.466.4 cm), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Transfer from the General Services Administration, 1985.65.21

Artwork Details

Monument to Sound
Not on view
sheet: 20 5826 18 in. (52.466.4 cm)
lower center in pencil: 36 Jonson lower left in pencil: MARCH. 1936 lower left in pencil: W-90 lower left in pencil: 4 (in a circle) FIXED lower right in pencil: W. 90 LB. C.P.
Credit Line
Transfer from the General Services Administration
Mediums Description
pencil on paper mounted on fiberboard
  • Abstract
  • New Deal — Works Progress Administration, Federal Art Project
Object Number

Artwork Description

The lines and shapes of Monument to Sound suggest an interior space where sound waves take visible form, a sanctuary for the imagination. The artist explained his dedication to abstraction based on science and spiritual values: “Around us we have realism, strife, pain, and greed. I wish to present the other side of life, namely the feeling of order, joy, and freedom. By setting up my own plastic means I can at least thrill to the attempt of establishing some fundamental principles that are universal and enduring.”

Graphic Masters II: Highlights from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, 2009