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A work made of oil on canvas.
© 2018 City & County of Denver, Courtesy Clyfford Still Museum / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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  • A work made of oil on canvas.




Clyfford Still
American, 1904-80

About this artwork

In the late 1940s, Clyfford Still, along with Barnett Newman and Mark Rothko, originated the type of Abstract Expressionism known as Field Painting, a term used to describe large canvases dominated by one uniform color or a few colors closely related in hue and value. In contrast to Newman and Rothko, who usually applied paint thinly and uniformly, Still used a palette knife, creating textural effects that give the surface a complex, nearly sculptural sense of materiality. Named after the years of its creation, 1951–52 is a rare, nearly all-black work in the artist’s oeuvre. A vertical white line to the right of center and a thin streak of red-orange along the left side provide the sole interruptions in the black field. The subtle modulations of texture and finish support the artist’s claim that "I do not oversimplify—in fact, I revel in the extra complex."

Currently Off View

Contemporary Art


Clyfford Still




United States


Artist's working dates 1951–1952


Oil on canvas


301.8 × 396.2 cm (118 3/4 × 156 in.)

Credit Line

Wirt D. Walker Fund; gift of John Stephan

Reference Number



© 2018 City & County of Denver, Courtesy Clyfford Still Museum / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


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