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In this work, Jasper Johns appears to refer to the various theories of colour that many painters have struggled with over the centuries. The stencilled letters R(ed), Y(ellow) and B(lue) are a reference to the three primary colours, which have also been used to paint the three largest sections of this work. The three predominantly white rectangles, with a different colour on each end, allude to the secondary colours, which can be seen elsewhere in the same work. Together, they form six of the seven colours of the rainbow, which also appears three times in the painting. Painters’ tools are also a central feature of this work, as can be seen from the broom in the yellow-painted section on the right, the handprints in the yellow and blue areas and the repeated use of the ruler.
c/o Pictoright, Amsterdam 2004




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paint , rulers and broom on canvas

Object number

A 24222