Male and Female (1942) by Jackson Pollock

Male and Female - Jackson Pollock - 1942

Artwork Information

TitleMale and Female
ArtistJackson Pollock
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions73.1 x 49 cm
Art MovementAbstract Expressionism
Current LocationPhiladelphia Museum of Art

About Male and Female

The artwork titled “Male and Female” was created by the influential artist Jackson Pollock in 1942. This work, an oil on canvas, measures 73.1 by 49 centimeters and is categorized within the abstract genre, embodying the principles of Abstract Expressionism. The Philadelphia Museum of Art is the custodian of this piece, enabling public appreciation and study.

“Male and Female” demonstrates Pollock’s exploration of symbolism and myth, which were prominent themes prior to his development of the dripped and poured painting techniques for which he is best known. The composition is heavily layered and richly textured, featuring a complex array of forms, lines, and colors that intertwine and overlap, creating a sense of dynamism and depth. The use of abstracted shapes and the title itself suggest a narrative of contrasting yet complementary elements, possibly referencing human figures or relationships, though the interpretation remains open given the abstraction inherent in the work.

Pollock’s application of paint varies from thick impasto to thinner washes, allowing the colors to interact in a manner that underscores the tension and harmony between the two supposed entities, “Male” and “Female.” This artwork captures a key moment in Pollock’s artistic journey, standing as a prelude to his action paintings that would later revolutionize the modern art world.

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