New York 40 (1986) by Aaron Siskind

New York 40 - Aaron Siskind - 1986

Artwork Information

TitleNew York 40
ArtistAaron Siskind
Art MovementAbstract Expressionism

About New York 40

The artwork titled “New York 40” was created by artist Aaron Siskind in 1986. Siskind, who is associated with the Abstract Expressionism movement, chose photography as his medium. The genre of this particular piece is a photo, and it stands as a testament to the abstract qualities that photography can capture, aligning with the principles of Abstract Expressionism, which emphasizes spontaneous, automatic, or subconscious creation.

The artwork presents a stark, monochromatic study, featuring a close-up view of peeling paint and weathered surfaces that result in rich textures and forms. Siskind’s photography often transforms these kinds of mundane subjects into compelling abstractions that transcend their origins, inviting viewers to interpret the forms and shadows before them. The various shades of black, white, and gray interact to create a composition that plays with the viewers’ perception, allowing them to glimpse something almost sculptural in the flat photograph. The viewer’s eye may trace the jagged lines of the paint or the stark contrasts between light and dark areas, engaging with the work in a way that is both visual and tactile in its suggestiveness. This piece is emblematic of Siskind’s body of work, where he sought to imbue objects of everyday decay with a sense of grandeur and universality.

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