Paint It Black March 11, 2011Posted by Mark Folse in cryptic envelopment, Dancing Bear, New Orleans, NOLA, Toulouse Street.
Tags: Black, Mark Rothko
Sometimes looking at Mark Rothko’s black period paintings is just what you need to do.
“A painting is not a picture of an experience, but is the experience.” — Mark Rothko
“Black: being of the achromatic color of maximum darkness; having little or no hue owing to absorption of almost all incident light” — wordnetweb.princeton.edu
We are trained to think of white as the color of possibility: the blank page perched in the typewriter. What if we are wrong?
The paintings, you will note, are not all solid black, and where they are exhibit a marked, textured brushwork you’re just not going to see on this web page. They begin from black, and from that something emerges.
If white is the color associated most often with the divine is black satanic, which to most means evil, or merely the absence of god? And in that absence infinite possibilities, the random collisions of specs in the void, clinging to each other in the dark, from which arises the ability to name the color: black.
Perhaps I will change the schema here to black with white type. Let us sit in Rothko’s black chapel for a while and think about it.