For the purposes of this assignment, I have chosen Piet Mondrian’s “Composition with Yellow, Blue and Red.” The artist painted the picture between 1937 and 1942, and, according to Composition with yellow, blue and red (n.d.), it reflected the progression in his search for “the abstract quality of the line.” The picture is currently displayed in the Tate Gallery in London, and I viewed it on the facility’s website. I have chosen this painting because it reflects a search for the essence of art, explicitly denying the existence of any meaning, instead investigating a formal element.
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Mondrian’s composition contains no elements that can be recognized as objects in the real world. Only rectangles and straight horizontal or vertical lines are present and do not appear to be governed by any discernible rules. Most extend from one edge of the painting, but two do not. One is a square, two occupy a space created by the grid, and the two others are placed randomly between two vertical lines, overlapped by those between them. The pattern of having one rectangle per each color is also broken, as two of the rectangles share the same color.
Composition in Yellow, Blue and Red represents the question of what elements constitute art and how they may be arranged. Mondrian’s answer lies in simplicity, reducing the forms as much as possible. Per Composition with yellow, blue and red (n.d.), by the time of the painting’s creation, he had eliminated objects such as curved lines and non-primary colors from his work. Moreover, Mondrian deliberately rejects order, trying to make the painting seem as random as possible with the limited tools he has given himself. As the artist’s final composition, the painting may be considered the culmination of his search for art.
Composition with yellow, blue and red. (n.d.). Web.