(American, b. 1940)
Silkscreen on canvas
Unframed: 284.4 x 442 cm (111 15/16 x 174 in.)
Wishing Well Fund 1972.91
© John Pearson
As opposed to allowing improvisation or traditional artistic techniques guide him, Pearson arrived at this composition by following rules he defined for himself. First, he limited his chromatic span and matched each color to a specific diagonal axis--as seen in the bottom strip of the canvas. Then he accumulated colored lines within discrete rectangles following a mathematical progression--for example, 12+11, 12+11+10, 12+11+10+9--and so on. The outcome remained unknown until he completed the painting. Pearson’s method is equal interplay between the artist’s aesthetic intervention and impersonal investigation. The linear formations and the application of color by silkscreening accentuates the work’s sense of control. Nevertheless, the resulting expansive field allows for unpredictable color formations.
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