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Homage to the Square/Red Series, Untitled II, 1968

Josef Albers

American, 1888-1976
Oil on masonite
32 x 32 in. (81.3 x 81.3 cm)
Norton Simon Museum, Gift of the Artist

On view

A prominent teacher at the Bauhaus school in Germany, Josef Albers continued to have an enormous influence on art students after immigrating to the United States in 1933. Upon his arrival, Albers immediately secured a faculty position at the experimental and venerable Black Mountain College in North Carolina, and then moved on to Yale, where he taught from 1950 to 1960. His consideration of the perceptual effects of color and light lasted for a quarter of a century, beginning while he was a student at the Bauhaus experimenting with stained glass. In his series Homage to the Square, he uses concentric squares in a limitless array of color combinations to explore the effects of certain color juxtapositions. In the present work, with its different values of red laid down with near-mechanical exactitude, the artist encourages reflection on the illusion of depth and space created merely by light against dark.

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