Ancient Wall (1976) by Philip Guston

Ancient Wall - Philip Guston - 1976

Artwork Information

TitleAncient Wall
ArtistPhilip Guston
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions80 x 93 1/2 in.
Art MovementNeo-Expressionism
Current LocationEstate of Philip Guston
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About Ancient Wall

Philip Guston’s ‘Ancient Wall’ is a unique oil painting that was done in 1976. This artwork display a pyramid-shaped structure intertwined with curved legs, which evokes feelings of nostalgia and uncanniness. The large scale of the picture, which measures 85 x 54 inches, gives it an unsettling presence that is visible at first glance. Ancient Wall is a powerful statement about the human condition and our ever-changing relationships to modern day architecture.

Guston created this piece during his late career when his style began to change away from purely abstract expressionism. The vibrant colors used in the work draw out an emotion that breaks away from his traditional minimalist tones. Unlike other pieces made during the same period, Ancient Wall combines abstract shapes and lines with surreal elements such as the multiple bent legs sprouting from the top of the wall. Additionally, there’s a sense of chaos as he overloads the painting with intense shades of red and blue to create a feeling of unease.

Ancient Wall is an interesting painting that offers insights into Philip Guston’s artistic expression and evolution over time. Overall, this artwork successfully conveys its message through the impressive attention to detail and creative use of color.’

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