Wednesday, March 3, 2021


Filed under: General — m759 @ 3:09 PM

From this journal on Nov. 9-12, 2004:

Fade to Black

“…that ineffable constellation of talents that makes the player of rank: a gift for conceiving abstract schematic possibilities; a sense of mathematical poetry in the light of which the infinite chaos of probability and permutation is crystallized under the pressure of intense concentration into geometric blossoms; the ruthless focus of force on the subtlest weakness of an opponent.”

— Trevanian, Shibumi

“‘Haven’t there been splendidly elegant colors in Japan since ancient times?’

‘Even black has various subtle shades,’ Sosuke nodded.”

— Yasunari Kawabata, The Old Capital

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Ad Reinhardt

An Ad Reinhardt painting described in the entry of
noon, November 9, 2004, is illustrated below.

Ad Reinhardt,  Greek Cross

Ad Reinhardt, Abstract Painting, 1960-66.
Oil on canvas, 60 x 60 inches.  Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

The viewer may need to tilt the screen to see that
this painting is not uniformly black, but is instead
a picture of a Greek cross, as described below.

“The grid is a staircase to the Universal…. We could think about Ad Reinhardt, who, despite his repeated insistence that ‘Art is art,’ ended up by painting a series of… nine-square grids in which the motif that inescapably emerges is a Greek cross.

Greek Cross

There is no painter in the West who can be unaware of the symbolic power of the cruciform shape and the Pandora’s box of spiritual reference that is opened once one uses it.”

— “Grids,” by Rosalind Krauss,
Meyer Schapiro Professor of Modern Art and Theory
at Columbia University
(Ph.D., Harvard U., 1969).

Related material from The New York Times  today —

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