No. 2 (Red Maroons)

(American, 1903–1970)
Framed: 202 x 207 x 3.5 cm (79 1/2 x 81 1/2 x 1 3/8 in.); Unframed: 200.7 x 205.7 cm (79 x 81 in.)
© 1998 Kate Rothko Prizel & Christopher Rothko / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
This artwork is known to be under copyright.

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Did You Know?

Rothko once stated, “A painting is not a picture of an experience, but is the experience.”


When asked to explain the aims of his art, Rothko answered, “I’m interested only in expressing basic human emotions—tragedy, ecstasy, doom, and so on. . . .” Most of his mature works feature diffuse areas of color appearing to float against a background of a different hue. Rothko typically applied several layers of diluted paint to each canvas, sometimes rubbing the wet surfaces with cloths to achieve his ethereal effects. Born Marcus Rothkowitz, the artist altered his name in 1940, partly in response to antisemitism. He and fellow Jewish artists—including Lee Krasner, Morris Louis, and Louise Nevelson, all represented in this gallery—made major contributions toward the development of American abstract art during the mid-1900s.
No. 2 (Red Maroons)

No. 2 (Red Maroons)


Mark Rothko

(American, 1903–1970)
America, 20th century


An Emotional Experience

How Did the Artist Create His Paintings?

Mark Rothko and His Work

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