For example, if you arent a liberal, you might be under the impression that the subject of landscape painting
is trees, rocks expansive skies and, somewhere in the distance, a buccolic mill stirring the waters of a bubbling creek.
you havent learnt to see
While it is the glowing, ovoid areas of color that the eye first embraces in a typical Rothko, it is useful to become aware of how they are contextualized with often dramatically emphasized horizons -- and borders. These divisions are mostly two, often three (occasionally more). They define a horizon gestalt between the areas of color; the borders the peripheral limitation of our normal view of any horizon. We thus float at the center of a prospect that falls out as below us, before us and above us -- the artist leaving us to our own associations, but determining within his formal structures, the extent of the world he wants those associations to inhabit. (Here the structure of the works of the early 1940s is crucial -- for they remain latent after 1950.) Thus, Rothko's tripartite and quadripartite compositions present a radical abstraction of the planet in cross-section from below the viewer's feet up, the internal light of that world provides it welcoming warmth or abject negation, as befits the artist's moods. At the end of his life, the last, sad, bipartite images (MRCR 814-831), leave us with a single horizon between the black of space and the earth's lithic interior -- all place of human grace on the surface under the sun having slipped away from his despairing reach.
Utterly out of keeping with Rothko's normal manner, they could easily be dismissed as studio-sweepings -- yet they assume a strange poignancy. Painted in acrylic in pale blues, pinks, dark rose and grays, they assume a certain pallor of extinction, as if they are a last, feeble expression of the artist's rage against the dying of the light.
After eighty years of unchallenged praise for the most idiotic examples of artwork passed off as great masterpieces, its time for a bit of politically incorrect counter jargon along with some serious criticism
Adequacy reader with 20/20 vision: That looks like something the dog threw up. How can you call yourself an artist if you cannot even draw?
Liberalist who's installed The Gimp: You have an "untrained eye". To appreciate art, you must trace its pedigree in art theory.
Adequacy reader with 20/20 eyesight:
Comrade, if I had a problem with my eyes, I would rush to an optometrist, not a liberalist art critic.