White Target (1969) by Jasper Johns

White Target - Jasper Johns - 1969

Artwork Information

TitleWhite Target
ArtistJasper Johns
Art MovementAbstract Expressionism,Pop Art

About White Target

“White Target” is an artwork by Jasper Johns, created in the year 1969. This piece is a testament to the influences of Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art, domains in which Johns has made considerable impact. The artwork falls under the genre of abstract art, showcasing Johns’ inclination towards depicting common objects through an abstract perspective.

The artwork presents the viewer with a concentric pattern that is reminiscent of a traditional target with its rings emanating outwards from a central point. The composition, primarily monochromatic, employs variations in texture and tone to achieve its effect rather than relying on color contrasts. Johns’ technique involves a thick, almost sculptural application of paint, which gives the work a tactile quality. The gestural brushstrokes are visible and add to the sense of depth and dynamism within the piece. The central bulls-eye, while maintaining its iconic form, is abstracted through this technique, generating a focus point that draws the eye. This abstraction of a commonly recognizable symbol invites contemplation on the object itself and its representation in art.

Johns, through this artwork, challenges traditional notions of both representation and abstraction. By transforming a universally known symbol into a subject for high art, he merges the everyday with the lofty, urging a reevaluation of both. The artwork stands as a commentary on visual perception and the arbitrariness of symbols, a hallmark of Johns’ broader oeuvre.

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