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Between and Mortarboard

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Accession Number


Richard Anuszkiewicz

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support
acrylic on canvas and board

31 in. x 23 in. ( 78.74 cm x 58.42 cm )

Credit Line
Bequest of the Estate of David Caldwell Leedy

Label copy
March 28 2009
Richard Anuszkiewicz was a leading figure in American Optical (or Op) Art, the term used to describe paintings and sculpture concerned with exploiting the optical effects of certain perceptual processes—phenomena such as the afterimage, consecutive movement, ambiguous figures, and reversible perspective. Anuszkiewicz, who in 1964 was dubbed “The New Wizard of Op” by Life magazine, was particularly interested in color interactions—the various effects that neighboring colors can have on one another—and particularly the eye-dazzling chromatic vibration that occurs when complementary colors (such as red and green) meet. He had a keen interest in illusions and executed pictures with a strong internal structure and vivid color. In Condensation colors collide, repeat, and change on the surface of the canvas, echoing repetitively in a series of nested squares and creating an intense optical effect that draws the viewer from deep within the picture plane back to its surface.

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