August 31, 2015
Agnes Martin is a fascinating artist who had an interesting perspective and attitude about color, proportion and shape. Martin worked only in black, white, and variations of brown in the 50s, but after leaving New York in the 60s and moving to New Mexico her work started to embrace a wider palette. During her time in Taos, she introduced light pastel washes to her grids, colors that were said to “shimmer in the changing light.” This characterized much of her work until the end of her life in 2004.
I was asked by the commissioning editor at the Tate Modern Museum in London to contribute an article to their website to coincide with a showing of Agnes Martin’s work, especially her use of pale pastel hues and the psychology behind the choices.
Although I might normally hesitate to “think” for the artist, especially if I never had the chance to meet with them, fortunately there was some excellent information written about her by some of the people who knew her very well and, most notably, some videotapes where the artist herself was interviewed.
The following of her works are among my favorites.