In my quest to research Abstract-Expressionism of the 40's and 50's, I've stumbled across some lesser-known facts about Rothko. Most of us are familiar with Rothko's vast monochromatic or dichromatic "color field" paintings. I would guess that most people respond to the ethereal quality of the life-sized canvases which seem to use color as their main force. What I find interesting is that Rothko denies color as the spiritual impetus behind his work:
"The fact that people break down and cry when confronted with my pictures shows that I can communicate those basic human emotions… the people who weep before my pictures are having the same religious experience I had when painting them. And if you say you are moved only by their color relationships then you miss the point."
1. To us art is an adventure into an unknown world, which can be explored only by those willing to take the risks.
2. This world of imagination is fancy-free and violently opposed to common sense.
3. It is our function as artists to make the spectator see the world our way not his way. 4. We favor the simple expression of the complex thought. We are for the large shape because it has the impact of the unequivocal. We wish to reassert the picture plane. We are for flat forms because they destroy illusion and reveal truth.
5. It is a widely accepted notion among painters that it does not matter what one paints as long as it is well painted. This is the essence of academicism.*
**Academic art is a style of painting and sculpture produced under the influence of European academies or universities. The art influenced by academies and universities in general is also called "academic art". In this context as new styles are embraced by academics, the new styles come to be considered academic, thus what was at one time a rebellion against academic art becomes academic art.