Sayre woa ch05_lecture-243768

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  • Learning Objectives1. Describe the ways in which artists use light to represent space and model form.2. Outline the principles of color theory, and describe the different sorts of color schemes that artists might employ.3. Explain how color might be used both in representational painting and as a symbolic tool.

  • IntroductionLight and color are elements that affect the creation of space in art.Artist Dan Flavin transformed the space of his gallery room with fluorescent colored lights in 1936.Venezuelan artist Carlos Cruz-Diez saturated three gallery chambers in red, green, and blue in his Chromosaturation.

  • The Dan Flavin Art Institute, Bridgehampton, New York. 196383.Courtesy of Dia Art Foundation, New York. Photo: Florian Holzherr. [Fig. 5-1]

  • Carlos Cruz-Diez, Chromosaturation. 201213. Site-specific environment composed of fluorescent lights with blue, red, and green filters.Courtesy of Americas Society Gallery, New York. Photo Arturo Sanchez. [Fig. 5-2]

  • LightNatural light helps define spatial relationships.Artists can control the experience of their work through the manipulation of light.

  • Atmospheric Perspective1 of 3Leonardo da Vinci concerned himself with writing "rules" for atmospheric or aerial perspective.Objects that are farther away appear less distinct, bluer in color, and have reduced light/dark contrast.

  • Atmospheric Perspective2 of 3Leonardo's Madonna of the Rocks shows three groupings of rocks with different distances marked only by atmospheric perspective.The one nearest to the viewer is on the right, and the one on the left that appears blue is the farthest.

  • Leonardo da Vinci, Madonna of the Rocks. ca. 14951508. Oil on panel, 6' 3" 47". National Gallery, London. 2015 National Gallery, London/Scala, Florence. [Fig. 5-3]

  • Atmospheric Perspective3 of 3J. M. W. Turner's Rain, Steam, and SpeedThe Great Western Railway does not depend solely on linear perspective.Light and atmosphere obscure the train tracks near the center of the work and create a more spiritual sense of reality.

  • J. M. W. Turner, Rain, Steam, and SpeedThe Great Western Railway. 1844. Oil on canvas, 33-1/4" 4'. National Gallery, London.akg-image/NationalGallery, London. [Fig. 5-4]

  • Value: From Light to Dark1 of 4The relative level of lightness or darkness of an area or object is traditionally called its relative value.When white is added to the basic hue (color), the variation is called a tint. When black is added to the basic hue, the variation is called a shade.For example, pink is a tint of red; maroon is a shade of red.

  • The gray scale. [Fig. 5-5]

  • Blue in a range of values. [Fig. 5-6]

  • Value: From Light to Dark2 of 4Pat Steir's Pink Chrysanthemum and Night Chrysanthemum feature three views of the same flower in stages of abstraction.Western culture often associates light with good and darkness with evil.In the eighteenth century, Goethe created a color theory linked with moral and religious significance.

  • Pat Steir, Pink Chrysanthemum. 1984. Oil on canvas, three panels, each 5 5'.Courtesy of the artist and Cheim & Read, New York. [Fig. 5-7]

  • Pat Steir, Night Chrysanthemum. 1984. Oil on canvas, three panels, each 5 5'.Courtesy of the artist and Cheim & Read, New York. [Fig. 5-8]

  • Value: From Light to Dark3 of 4For African Americans, particularly during the 1960s, blackness signified goodness and pride.Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man influenced the community to adopt the Black Power movement, which asserted that black was a color composed of all other colors.

  • Value: From Light to Dark4 of 4Ben Jones's Black Face and Arm Unit is a series of twelve arms and faces decorated with bands of color that recall ancient African sculpture.

  • Ben Jones, Black Face and Arm Unit. 1971. Acrylic on plaster, life-size plaster casts.Courtesy of the artist. [Fig. 5-9]

  • Chiaroscuro and Modeling1 of 3Chiaroscuro refers to the balance of light and shade in a work, most often exhibited when the artist transitions from light to dark around a curved surface.Using chiaroscuro on a curved surface is called modeling.

  • Chiaroscuro and Modeling2 of 3Paul Colin drew Figure of a Woman on beige paper, indicating shadow with black crayon and light with white crayon.Highlights are indicated by white and directly reflect the light source.Areas of shadow include the shadow proper, the core of the shadow, and the darkest cast shadow.

  • Paul Colin, Figure of a Woman. ca. 1930. Black and white crayon on light beige paper, 24 18-1/2". Frederick and Lucy S. Herman Foundation, University of Virginia Art Museum.Collection of Frederick and Lucy S. Herman Foundation. 2015 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris. [Fig. 5-10]

  • A sphere represented by means of modeling. [Fig. 5-11]

  • Chiaroscuro and Modeling3 of 3Tenebrism is a technique separate from modeling in which areas of dark contrast sharply with smaller, brightly illuminated areas.Artemisia Gentileschi's Judith and Maidservant with the Head of Holofernes lights the heroic Judith strongly with a candle, with her hand casting a powerful shadow over her face.

  • Artemisia Gentileschi, Judith and Maidservant with the Head of Holofernes. ca. 1625. Oil on canvas, 6' 1/2" 4' 7-3/4". Detroit Institute of Arts.Gift of Mr Leslie H. Green. Bridgeman Images. [Fig. 5-12]

  • Hatching and Cross-Hatching1 of 2Hatching is an area of closely spaced parallel lines.The Coiffure by Mary Cassatt uses parallel lines to render the depth of shadow in the room.

  • Mary Cassatt, The Coiffure. ca. 1891. Graphite with traces of green and brown watercolor, approx. 5-78 4-38". National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.Rosenwald Collection, 1954.12.6. Photo Board of Trustees, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. [Fig. 5-13]

  • Hatching and Cross-Hatching2 of 2Michelangelo's Head of a Satyr employs hatching on the back of the figure's neck and head.It also features cross-hatching, where one set of hatches is crossed at an angle by one or more sets of hatches, creating a darker area of lines.

  • Michelangelo, Head of a Satyr. ca. 162030. Pen and ink over chalk, 10-5/8 7-7/8". Muse du Louvre, Paris.INV684-recto. Photo RMN-Grand Palais (muse du Louvre)/Michle Bellot. [Fig. 5-14]

  • Contrast: Light and DarkGreater contrast between light and dark often has greater dramatic impact.In Shirin Neshat's Fervor, women and men worshiping at a mosque are separated both by a divider and by the color of their garments.The single white face of a woman who turns toward the camera draws the viewer further into the narrative.

  • Shirin Neshat, Fervor. 2000. Gelatin silver print, 5' 6" 47". Shirin Neshat, courtesy of Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels. [Fig. 5-15]

  • The Creative ProcessThe Play of Light and Dark: Mary Cassatt's In the LogeCassatt sketched the idea with a clear division between light and dark, with the line of light abruptly stopping at the figure's hand and face.A slice of the woman's neck in the final version creates two light-and-dark diagonals.

  • Mary Cassatt, Study for In the Loge. 1878. Graphite, 4 6". Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.Gift of Dr. Hans Schaeffer, 55.28. Photograph 2015 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.[Fig. 5-16]

  • Mary Cassatt, In the Loge (At the Franais, a Sketch). 1878. Oil on canvas, 32 26". Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.Hayden Collection, 10.35. Photograph 2015 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. [Fig. 5-17]

  • ColorOn the evening of June 29, 2002, Cai Guo-Qiang's Transient Rainbow was displayed across the East River in New York City.It was a fireworks display in the colors of the rainbow.The symbolic message was one of hope, renewal, and healing in a post-9/11 period.

  • Cai Guo-Qiang, Transient Rainbow, realized over the East River, New York.June 29, 2002. One thousand 3" multicolor peony fireworks fitted with computer chips, 300 600', duration 15 sec. Commissioned by the Museum of Modern Art, New York, for the opening of MoMA Queens. Photo: Hiro Ihara, courtesy of Cai Studio. 2015 Cai Guo-Qiang. [Fig. 5-18]

  • Basic Color Vocabulary1 of 5Sir Isaac Newton discovered that light breaks into a spectrum, or bands of color, and he reorganized them into a circle to create the conventional color wheel.In this system, primary colors are red, yellow, and blue.

  • Colors separated by a prism into the spectrum. [Fig. 5-19]

  • Conventional color wheel. [Fig. 5-20]

  • Basic Color Vocabulary2 of 5Secondary colors are orange, green and violet, and are mixtures of two surrounding primary colors.Intermediate colors mix a primary color and nearby secondary color.In this system, mixing all colors together creates black, the absence of color; it is known as a subtractive process.

  • Color mixtures of reflected pigmentsubtractive process. [Fig. 5-21]

  • Basic Color Vocabulary3 of 5Mixing colored light is an additive process.Primary colors are red-orange, green, and blue-violet.Secondaries are yellow, magenta, and cyan.As more colors are combined and more light is added, the colors become brighter.

  • Color mixtures of refracted lightadditive process. [Fig. 5-22]

  • Basic Color Vocabulary4 of 5Color can be described by its hue, relative value, and intensity or saturation.Intensity can be reduced by adding a gray or opposite hue, or by adding a medium.

  • Basic Color Vocabulary5 of 5Michelangelo's frescoes in the Sistine Chapel were thought to have been painted in dull, somber hues, but were discovered to have been covered with centuries of dust, smoke, grease, and animal glue.

  • Michelangelo, The Creation of Adam (unrestored), ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. 150812. Fresco. Vatican City.Canali Photobank, Milan, Italy. [Fig. 5-23]

  • Michelangelo, The Creation of Adam (restored), ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. 150812. Fresco. Vatican City.akg-image/Erich Lessing. [Fig. 5-24]

  • Color Schemes1 of 8Analogous color schemes are composed of neighboring hues on the color wheel.They are often organized on the basis of color temperature.

  • Color Schemes2 of 8Jane Hammond's Fallen consists of warm yellows, oranges, reds, and the occasional green, exuding warmth.Each leaf is inscribed with the name of a soldier killed in the Iraq War, a testament to tragedy and healing.

  • Jane Hammond, Fallen. 200411. Archival digital inkjet prints on archival paper with acrylic, gouache, matte medium, Jade glue, fiberglass strands, and Sumi ink on a pedestal of high-density foam, cotton, muslin, cotton thread, foam core, and handmade cotton rag paper, 11" 12' 10" 7' 5". Whitney Museum of American Art. New York. 2007.6. Courtesy of Galerie Lelong, New York. Photo: Peter Muscato. Jane Hammond. [Fig. 5-25]

  • Color Schemes3 of 8Romare Bearden's She-ba features cool blues and greens, accented with red, yellow, and orange.The subject seems to cool the arid desert atmosphere with everything she touches.

  • Romare Bearden, She-ba. 1970. Collage on paper, cloth, and synthetic polymer paint on composition board, 4' 35-7/8". Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford. Ella Gallup Sumner and Mary Catlin Sumner Collection Fund, 1971.12. Art Romare Bearden Foundation/Licensed by VAGA, New York. [Fig. 5-26]

  • Color Schemes4 of 8Complementary color schemes include hues opposite each other on the color wheel.Simultaneous contrast occurs when two complementary colors appear brighter when placed next to each other without any mixing.

  • Color Schemes5 of 8The Cara Grande features brilliant blue-violet feathers surrounding a yellow-orange face.Color interactions in Gerhard Richter's 180 Farben creates the effect of gray spots in between blocks of color, a trick of the eye.

  • Cara Grande feather mask, Tapirap, Rio Tapirap, Brazil. ca. 1960. Height 31". National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, D.C. [Fig. 5-27]

  • Gerhard Richter, 180 Farben (180 Colors). 1971. Oil on canvas, 6' 6-3/4" 6' 6-3/4". Philadelphia Museum of Art. Gerhard Richter. [Fig. 5-28]

  • Color Schemes6 of 8Georges Seurat uses pointilism in paintings such as La Chahut to create a sense of tension between complementary colors.He believed placing complements side by side, the intensity of the colors would be enhanced; however, there is a limited range at which the viewers' eyes can mix the colors, and the work appears murky from farther away.

  • Georges Seurat, La Chahut (The Can-Can). 188990. Oil on canvas, 5' 6-1/8" 4' 7-1/2". Museum Krller- Muller, Otterlo, The Netherlands. [Fig. 5-29]

  • Georges Seurat, La Chahut (The Can-Can) (detail). 188990. Museum Krller-Muller, Otterlo, The Netherlands. [Fig. 5-30]

  • Color Schemes7 of 8Robert Delaunay experimented with "simultaneous disks" in an effort to balance complements in giant color wheels.His wife Sonia captured dynamic, energetic colors and flowing lines in her Prismes Electriques.Her work is an open palette, polychromatic with many colors.

  • Robert Delaunay, Premier Disque. 1912. Oil on canvas, diameter 4' 5". Private collection. Photo Christie's Images/Bridgeman Images. [Fig. 5-31]

  • Sonia Delaunay, Prismes Electriques (Electric Prisms). 1914. Oil on canvas, 8' 2-3/8" 8' 2-3/8". Muse National d'Art Moderne, Paris. 2015. Photo Scala, Florence. Pracusa S.A. [Fig. 5-34]

  • Color Schemes8 of 8Monochromatic works feature a single color from a closed or restricted palette.The Dylan Painting by Brice Marden appears to be a single purplish gray, but when viewed in person the surface changes with the light.Marden was a Minimalist who rejected polychromatic color.

  • Brice Marden, The Dylan Painting. 1966/1986. Oil and beeswax on canvas, 5' 3/8". 10' 1/2". San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Helen Crocker Russell Fund purchase and gift of Mrs. Helen Portugal. 2015 Brice Marden/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. [Fig. 5-35]

  • The Creative ProcessThe New Pointilism: Chuck Close's StanleyClose's method includes overlaying a large photograph with a grid, which he then fills with micro-paintings to create a larger image.Each micro-painting consists of two to four concentric circles.The work is both fully representational and fully abstract.

  • Chuck Close, Stanley II. 198081. Oil on canvas, 9 7'. The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.Purchased with funds contributed by Mr. and Mrs. Barrie M. Damson, 1981, 81.2839. Photo: David Heald. Chuck Close, courtesy of Pace Gallery. [Fig. 5-32]

  • Chuck Close, Stanley II, detail. 198081. Purchased with funds contributed by Mr. and Mrs. Barrie M. Damson, 1981, 81.2839. Photo: David Heald. Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, New York (FN 2839). Chuck Close, courtesy of Pace Gallery. [Fig. 5-33]

  • Representational and Symbolic Uses of Color1 of 3Local color is the color we "know" an object to be, such as bananas being yellow.Perceptual color is exemplified in atmospheric perspective.Monet did not paint his Grainstack to be true to the knowledge that "hay is yellow"; colors reflect the way natural light rendered it to his eyes.

  • Claude Monet, Grainstack (Sunset). 1891. Oil on canvas, 28-7/8 36-1/2". Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Juliana Cheney Edwards Collection, 25.112. Photograph 2015 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. [Fig. 5-36]

  • Representational and Symbolic Uses of Color2 of 3Impressionist techniques involved mixing color on the canvas.This contrasts Seurat's paintings, where the color mixing is in the eye of the beholder.Arbitrary color is used by artists to render subjects in hues that are true to neither their optical nor local color.

  • Representational and Symbolic Uses of Color3 of 3Pierre Bonnard's The Terrace at Vernonnet features a violet tree contrasting the orange-colored figures.Space is flattened and backgrounds seem to coexist in the same place.

  • Pierre Bonnard, The Terrace at Vernonnet. ca. 1939. Oil on canvas, 4' 9-11/16" 6' 4-1/2". Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Mrs. Frank Jay Gould, 1968. 68.1. 2015. Image copyright Metropolitan Museum of Art/Art Resource/Scala, Florence. 2015 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris. [Fig. 5-37]

  • Symbolic Color1 of 2Color symbolizes different things in different contexts and cultural environment.In Vincent van Gogh's The Night Caf, the artist uses red and green to create visual tension and emotional balance; this context is different the red-and-green color scheme Americans often associate with Christmas.

  • Vincent van Gogh, The Night Caf. 1888. Oil on canvas, 28-1/2 36-1/4". Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven.Bequest of Stephen Carlton Clark, 1961.18.34. [Fig. 5-38]

  • Symbolic Color2 of 2Wassily Kandinsky's Black Lines is punctuated with nervous, black lines that overlay nonobjective colors and shapes.Red and green juxtaposes active and passive for the artist, whereas van Gogh's work references "powers of darkness."

  • Wassily Kandinsky, Black Lines (Schwarze Linien). December 1913. Oil on canvas, 4' 3" 4' 3-5/8". Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.Gift, Solomon R. Guggenheim, 1937, 37.241. Photo: David Heald, Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation/Art Resource, New York. 2015 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris. [Fig. 5-39]

  • The Critical Process: Thinking about Light and ColorKatharina Grosse's Cincy features swathes of spray painted color so vibrant they appear to be light projections.The Rosenthal Center, which was designed by Iraqi-born Zaha Hadid and housed this work, provides a stark contrast.

  • Katharina Grosse, Cincy. 2006. Installation view, Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art, Cincinnati, Ohio.Courtesy of the Contemporary Arts Centre (CAC). Photo: Tony Walsh Katharina Grosse/DACS. 2015 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn. [Fig. 5-40]

  • Zaha Hadid, Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art, Cincinnati, Ohio. 2003. VIEW Pictures Ltd/Alamy. [Fig. 5-41]

  • Thinking Back1. Describe the ways in which artists use light to represent space and model form.2. Outline the principles of color theory, and describe the different sorts of color schemes that artists might employ.3. Explain how color might be used both in representational painting and as a symbolic tool.