Blue Poles: Number 11, 1952′ is a masterpiece by the renowned abstract expressionist painter Jackson Pollock. Measuring 212.1 x 488.2 cm, this painting is considered one of his finest works and represents his unique skill with the infamous ‘drip’ technique. It features enamel, aluminum paint poured and dripped onto the canvas, embedded shards of glass, and even footprints. The eight dark vertical stripes that interrupt the swirling surface are what gave it its name.
Originally titled as Number 11 in Pollock’s solo show at Sidney Janis Gallery in New York in November 1952, Blue Poles was later purchased by the National Gallery of Australia amid controversy in 1973 for an undisclosed sum- rumored to be over one million dollars at the time-, making it one of the gallery’s major holdings. This painting is considered Pollock’s most famous work globally.
Apart from being aesthetically pleasing, Blue Poles also holds historical significance due to its emergence during a period when abstract art was gaining popularity rapidly worldwide. As a result, its value has continued to rise steadily over time making it iconic within art history globally.