Color Chart at MoMA

Art & Design


I was lucky enough to get to the Museum of Modern Art in New York this morning to see Color Chart: Reinventing Color, 1950 to Today.  Forty-four artists including Ellsworth Kelly, Andy Warhol, Gerhard Richter, and Damien Hirst explore ready-made color in various forms including paintings, sculpture and large art installations.


Color Chart opens at the foot of the lobby staircase
with Jim Lambie’s 1999 work ZOBOP!, a vinyl tape installation of vertical lines that sets the tone for the rest of the exhibition. Colorful and delightful, most of the works appeal immediately and elicit a sense of joy in the viewer.

Towards the end of the exhibition, though, the photographs of Carrie Mae Weems’ Colored People Series provoke deeper reactions about the idea of race and color and the 17 photographs that make up Walid Raad’s twenty-three year work Let’s Be Honest, the Weather Helped, use color to sharply focus on the number of outside agencies that have been involved in the Lebanese Civil War.


To complement the exhibition, MoMA have produced a flash website which is a good place to begin if you are thinking of visiting Color Chart – or a great resource if you can’t get to Manhattan to see it in person. It’s extremely easy to navigate, stylish and of course very colorful. Watch the video of Sol De Witt’s Wall Drawing #84 to understand the technical challenges of installing the Crayola Crayon squares or Niele Toroni using Benjamin Moore paint and a #50 paintbrush to make Imprints on the wall exactly 30 cm apart. It’s fascinating.

The exhibition runs from March 2–May 12, 2008 at MoMA, NY. The Museum is closed Tuesdays.

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