Robert Mangold - Untitled
American, b.1937
Untitled, 2000
Woodcut, 29.5 x 55.5 inches
Edition 11/30
Pace Editions Inc.

Gift of Judy and J.D. Williamson II (BBA '67, MBA '68)

After earning an MFA from Yale University in 1961, Mangold had his first solo exhibition in 1964 and has thus become a widely recognized figure in the art world. He uses subtle color and curvilinear abstract forms to create his delicate images. Mangold encourages the viewer to find subtle complexities in the simplest formal arrangements. His art is a quiet and slow and requires a calm and focused eye.

In Untitled, Mangold presents three panels of color anchored by a centered black rectangle. The flanking brown panels carry related looped lines that spring from opposite corners of the image and connect at the top of each side of the black rectangle. What is posed and clear-cut at first glance is offset, however, by the differing speeds and energies of each whiplashed line and by the subtlest of adjustments and surprises. Mangold's woodcut, although on a single sheet of paper, is created from three separate blocks of wood, slightly separated from each other as revealed by what appears to be a drawn line that, in actuality, is unprinted paper. Furthermore, the looped line to the left begins and ends in the opposite corners of its panel, whereas the other moves from top corner to top corner of its panel. And, as each arabesque joins the black rectangle, it unexpectedly crosses over from the flanking sheet of paper into the central sheet - into what is not a single black panel of color but one laced with brown verticals. What seems to be is otherwise.