Mark Rothko And Mysticism. Essay

787 words - 3 pages

1 IntroductionIn this paper I am going to concentrate on the mystical implications of the work of the well known abstract painter Mark Rothko [1903-1970]. First I will sketch a brief description of the history of the beginning of abstract painting and its relation to mysticism and spirituality. Than I will give a few details on Rothko's biography. Finally I will describe what mysticism means.1.1 Abstract Art.In one sense, abstract painting is ancient; in another, it is quite recent. Abstract patterns appear on artefacts such as clothes and pottery since ancient times, but only as decorative designs. In fine art, the idea of abstract painting begins only from the nineteenth century, when it was motivated by the invention of photography. Photography made painters realise that visual art should not be simply used to describe what is observed. But ideas related to abstract appeared in painting even before photography was invented. For example, James McNeill Whistler compared visual art to music. He asserted that, just as music attempts to produce a harmonious arrangement of sounds, visual art should attempt to produce a harmonious arrangement of colours. His painting from 1875, Nocturne in Black and Gold, is considered a landmark in the history of abstraction.Nearly from its beginning, abstract painting was considered related to spirituality. Several of the pioneers of abstract art, the Russian painters Wassily Kandinsky and Kasimir Malevitch, and the Dutch painter Piet Mondrian, were strongly influenced by the religious mysticism of theosophy. The abstract cross-shaped patterns that often appear in Mondrian's paintings, for instance, have spiritual meaning: in his notebooks he says that they represent the struggle leading the cosmos from dualism to unity, and the religious symmetry underlying the material world.Piet Mondrian, Composition A, 1923Oil on canvas (Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Rome)Kandinsky thought all reality to be spiritual, including science and art. He argued that the way science deals with dynamic forces reveals that matter is ultimately spiritual in nature. Just as science displays the spiritual forces behind the visible world, so art should also reveal these forces. Kandinsky saw himself as a spiritual pioneer, not just a pioneer in art. In his book form 1910, Concerning the spiritual in art, he said artists were...

Find Another Essay On Mark Rothko and Mysticism.

Abstract Expressionism Essay

1464 words - 6 pages subject is critical.”. This just says that there is basically always a deeper meaning to a painting and if there is none then it is not a good painting. They draw away from comman sense and subject matter is very important. This also adds emphasis on how art relates to a specific period in time, and what inspires it, or what reaction art has against or for an event that is happening at that time. Mark Rothko Mark Rothko born September 25 1903

The Meaning of Abstract Art Essay

1098 words - 4 pages flexibility of abstract art, it continued to appeal to artists well after its initial inception and so the meaning of abstract art continues to evolve. Mark Rothko is a classic example of nonrepresentational art, or abstract art. He first appeared in the 1940's and is "identified with the New York School, a circle of painters that emerged during the 1940's as a new collective voice in the American art." (

Thoughts on Modernism

1262 words - 5 pages . It was also a time of post WWII, the television and the atomic age. A new threat would soon be issued to America however, and its name would be Communism. Combined, these things would all help shape the ideals and expressions of the artists, architects, writers and designers of the day.There were several artists during this period that were considered to be avant-garde. It was during this period that in art Mark Rothko pushed the patron to their

Abstract Expressionism

1647 words - 7 pages . The paint is so thick that it stands out of the page and gives the feeling of depth. I feel that with the cautious strokes and flicks he is striving to achieve a definite aesthetic beauty and therefore must be feeling sensitive or must be reflecting on some sort of soft beauty. If I had to describe Blue Poles in two words it would be considered and uniform. Another piece with stays with me is 'No.3' (1949) by Mark Rothko. This piece is


795 words - 3 pages Mark ReyesProf. John Foley11/19/14Philosophy of KantImmanuel Kant is one of the most influential philosophers in the history of Western philosophy. His contributions to metaphysics, epistemology, ethics have had a profound impact on almost every philosophical movement that followed him. Empiricists, such as Locke, Berkeley, and Hume, argued that human knowledge originates in our sensations. Locke, for instance, was a representative realist about

Discussion on Abstract Art vs. 'Fine' Art

1081 words - 4 pages existence a new genre of artists, something fairly recent and 'innovative,' so to speak. They are the type such as Mark Rothko, Wassily Kandinsky, and Mark Chagall. These people create Expressionistic, Abstract, and Surrealist artwork, supposedly full of talent and meaning, so much so that they have to be fully explained and yet the viewer still has no idea what the hell he or she is looking at. The works created by these artists resemble the

The Degeneration of Fine Art Museums Into Warehouses for Modern 'Art'

1077 words - 4 pages artists, something fairly recent and 'innovative,' so to speak. They are the type such as Mark Rothko, Wassily Kandinsky, and Mark Chagall. These people create Expressionistic, Abstract, and Surrealist artwork, supposedly full of talent and meaning, so much so that they have to be fully explained and yet the viewer still has no idea what the hell he or she is looking at. The works created by these artists resemble the scratchings of a three year

American Abstract Art

2938 words - 12 pages such as `Untitled (Violet, Black, Orange, Yellow on White and Red)' by Rothko `metaphorically encompass' the tragic `cycle of life from cradle to grave, in part by harbouring an oblique reference to both adorations and entombments.' ( He also suggests that this particular painting, of 1949 represents a mother, possibly the Virgin Mary; represented by the blocks of red orange and

Willem De Kooning

877 words - 4 pages was mostly influenced by the Cubism and Surrealism of Picasso and by Gorky who he shared a studio with.In 1938 de Kooning started creating works with a theme that would recur many times in his later life - Women. He exhibited in many group shows during the 1940s with other artists who would form the New York School and became known as Abstract Expressionists. The artists included Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Clyfford Still.De Kooning's first

Eastern Influences on Modern Art

930 words - 4 pages to many changes in the world of art that have become characteristic of modern culture; eastern influence can be seen today in many works of art, the brilliant colour fields of painter Mark Rothko no doubt consciously or subconsciously inspired by eastern ideas of time and space. "Eventually Monet, Manet, Gauguin and Van Gogh would all acknowledge their debt to this Asian influence."(Shlain 159).

Wide Reading Task 2

1776 words - 8 pages of felt slightly guilty about dissing your parents to a stranger. But I wasn’t a stranger, was I? I laughed at that thought. You knew nothing about me but I knew so much about you. You started to glance around the place. I got the sick feeling that you were trying to leave. I had to keep you interested. “What does your mother collect?” “Colours mostly. Paintings of buildings. Shapes. Do you know Rothko? Mark Rothko?” I had no clue. “Well that kind

Similar Essays

Comparison Of Jackson Pollack, Willem De Koonig And Mark Rothko In The Modern Era

1754 words - 7 pages movements and not just splattered everywhere. Best example would be "excavation" by Mark Rothko, where he would lay huge canvasses on the floor while he would drip and dribble paint on them. Though it would seem that he was just tossing paint everywhere, he had an idea of how much paint to use, where to put it, and how to layer it. The abstract expressionist movement has many adjectives to describe it like, action painting, or being spontaneous

Mark Rothko Despite Rothko's Achievements In The Art World

915 words - 4 pages Art Appreciation-Mark Rothko-Mark Rothko (Marcus Rothkowitz) was born in Dvinsk, Russia, on September 25, 1903, the fourth child of Jacob Rothkowitz, a pharmacist, and Anna Goldin Rothkowitz (4). Rothko and his family (Jewish) immigrated to the United States when he was ten years old, and settled in Portland, Oregon. Rothko attended Yale University in 1921, where he studied English, French, European history, elementary mathematics, physics

The Rothko Chapel Essay

2075 words - 8 pages Mark Rothko is recognized as one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century and during his lifetime was touted as a leading figure in postwar American painting. He is one of the outstanding figures of Abstract Expressionism and one of the creators of Color Field Painting. As a result of his contribution of great talent and the ability to deliver exceptional works on canvas one of his final projects, the Rothko Chapel offered to him by

Using Artists Of Your Choice Discuss The Ways In Which An Artist (Or Artists) Have Privileged Colour As An Means Of Artistic Expression

1806 words - 7 pages painting'.Bibliography:· Abstract Expressionism - The Triumph of American Painting, Irving Sandler, Pall Mall Press·· Cezanne, Mary Tompkins Lewis, Phaidon, 2000· Delacroix - Pastels, Lee Johnson, John Murray, 1995· Friedrich, Norbert Wolf, Taschen· Matisse, Gilles Neret, Taschen· Matisse - The Sensuality of Colour, Xavier Girald, Thames and Hudson, 1993· Monet, Carla Rachman, Phaidon, 1997· Mark Rothko 1903-1970, Tate Gallery Publishing· Mark Rothko, Diane Waldman, Thames and Hudson