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Seattle Art Museum (SAM)

Crimson Spinning #2

Photo: Spike Mafford / Zocalo Studios. Courtesy of the Friday Foundation

Crimson Spinning #2


Adolph Gottlieb

American, 1903-1974

Adolph Gottlieb’s Crimson Spinning #2 is a characteristic example of his ‘Burst’ paintings, an iconic body of work that would occupy the artist from the mid-1950s into the 1970s. An extension of his earlier ‘Imaginary Landscapes’, the ‘Burst’ paintings similarly feature compositions with ovoid shapes in opposition with staccato brushstrokes—further explorations into the possibilities of formal and conceptual dichotomies. In Crimson Spinning #2, stillness and movement are captured in the dynamic juxtaposition of forms: a red orb and cluster of black brushstrokes appear suspended in two separate registers.
Oil on canvas
90 x 72 in. (228.7 cm x 182.9 cm)
Gift of the Friday Foundation in honor of Richard E. Lang and Jane Lang Davis
Provenance: Mr. and Mrs. Harry Sherwood, Beverly Hills, California; [Marlborough Gallery, New York]; purchased from gallery by Jane and Richard Lang, Seattle, Washington, 1972
Photo: Spike Mafford / Zocalo Studios. Courtesy of the Friday Foundation
Not currently on view


Exhibition HistoryParis, France, Galerie Rive Droit, Adolph Gottlieb, Apr. 3 - 30, 1959.

London, England, Institute of Contemporary Arts, Adolph Gottlieb: Paintings 1944–1959, June 4 - July 4, 1959.

Los Angeles, California, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, New York School: The First Generation, Paintings of the 1940s and 1950s, June 16 - Aug. 1, 1965. Cat. no. 35, reproduced in color p. 98.

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, American Art: Third Quarter Century, Aug. 23 - Oct. 14, 1973.

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, The Richard and Jane Lang Collection, Feb. 2 - Apr. 1, 1984. Text by Bruce Guenther and Barbara Johns. Cat. no. 13, p. 27.

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, SAM at 75: Building a Collection for Seattle, May 5 - Sept. 9, 2007.
Published ReferencesA Community of Collectors: 75th Anniversary Gifts to the Seattle Art Museum. Seattle: Seattle Art Museum and University of Washington Press, 2008. Reproduced p. 31.

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