Face with Watch (1996) by Jasper Johns

Face with Watch - Jasper Johns - 1996

Artwork Information

TitleFace with Watch
ArtistJasper Johns
Art MovementAbstract Expressionism,Pop Art

About Face with Watch

“Face with Watch” is an artwork created by the artist Jasper Johns in 1996. Johns’ work is known to incorporate elements of Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art, and this particular piece is classified under the figurative genre.

The artwork presents an intriguing composition that simultaneously invites introspection and evokes the complexity of time and identity. A central motif resembling a watch, complete with a strap and a dial, adorns the right side of the composition, suggesting a preoccupation with the passage of time. On the left side, a figure that appears as vertical, abstracted elements may represent a stylized form of a human profile or face, a recurring subject in Johns’ oeuvre. This side of the composition contrasts with the watch through its organic texture and less structured form.

The color palette of the artwork is somewhat subdued, with earthy tones dominating most of the space, punctuated by the stark red of the watch’s strap and the lighter hues within the central patterned area, which adds a rhythmic quality to the work. The background is brown, providing a warm, cohesive field that binds the composition together.

Contrasts in texture and symbolic elements, such as the watch, infer a narrative that intertwines personal identity with the inexorable nature of time. Johns’ adept manipulation of form and symbol in “Face with Watch” provokes reflection on how we perceive and measure our existence within the temporal dimensions of life.

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