Composition with Blue, Yellow, Black, and Red is a painting created by Piet Mondrian in 1922. A co-founder of De Stijl art movement and Neo-Plasticism, Mondrian’s commitment to relational opposites, asymmetry, and pure planes of color is evident in this painting. The artwork features an asymmetrical grid made up of vertical and horizontal lines intersecting to form rectangles filled with only blue, yellow, black, red and white colors.
Mondrian used the principle of “constant ratio” while constructing the grid using right angles. His unique style evolved into neo-plasticism which came to be highly influential in art and design since the 1920s. The composition has one large dominant block of red that balances smaller blocks of yellow, blue gray and white resembling everything from stained glass windows to graphic designs.
The thick black brushwork defining the borders around each colored rectangle creates a sense that each shape fits precisely within its own individual framework. Composition with Blue Yellow Black Red highlights Mondrian’s mastery using basic elements as tools for producing sophisticated forms of abstraction in painting. It remains one of his most admired paintings today not only because it exemplifies his forward-thinking vision but also because it holds strong cultural capital which attracts newer generations towards impeccable utilization of colors in syntax-friendly forms.