Robert Irwin

 
 
2007
aircraft honeycomb aluminum
six panels, 241 1/4 x 265 1/2 x 1 5/8 in. each; overall installation dimensions variable
Museum Purchase, Contemporary Collectors Fund

The enameled panels of Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow & Blue³ (2006-2007) and Primaries and Secondaries (2007) function as colored mirrors whose complex reflections enable us to see the world in a new light. At the same time, they spark interlaced art-historical connotations, from color theory to mid-20th-century Modernist abstraction. Referencing a canvas by Barnett Newman, Who's Afraid of Red, Yellow & Blue³ takes on the challenge of representing the three primary colors in a large immersive environment of three “rooms” formed by horizontal panels of color that rest on the gallery floor and suspended ceilings of color. Primaries and Secondaries explores relationships of primary and secondary colors through vertical panels of color.

1962
Oil on canvas
83 x 84 x 1/2 in
Collection Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, Museum purchase with funds from the Bobby Short Benefit
1970
cast acrylic column
144 x 8 1/2 x 3 1/2 in
Collection Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, Museum purchase in honor of Jackie and Rea Axline. © Robert Irwin/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo by Philipp Scholz Rittermann
1969
Acrylic lacquer on formed acrylic plastic
53 in diameter x 3 in deep
Collection Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, Museum purchase
2006-2007
aircraft honeycomb aluminum
13 panels, 84 x 38 x 1 5/8 in each; overall installation dimensions variable
Museum purchase

The enameled panels of Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow & Blue³ (2006-2007) and Primaries and Secondaries (2007) function as colored mirrors whose complex reflections enable us to see the world in a new light. At the same time, they spark interlaced art-historical connotations, from color theory to mid-20th-century Modernist abstraction. Referencing a canvas by Barnett Newman, Who's Afraid of Red, Yellow & Blue³ takes on the challenge of representing the three primary colors in a large immersive environment of three “rooms” formed by horizontal panels of color that rest on the gallery floor and suspended ceilings of color. Primaries and Secondaries explores relationships of primary and secondary colors through vertical panels of color.