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Untitled, 1968

Robert Irwin

American, 1928-
Synthetic polymer paint on metal disc and arm
60 in. diameter (152.4 cm); white metal arm: 20 x 8-3/8 in. (50.8 x 21.3 cm)
Norton Simon Museum, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene M. Schwartz
P.1969.132
© 2011 Robert Irwin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York Reproduction, including downloading of ARS works is prohibited by copyright laws and international conventions without the express written permission of Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Not on view

Robert Irwin experimented with the perceptual dissolution between the object and the place in which it appeared. Using light as a raw material, he collected, harnessed and diffused it, sometimes with scrims and natural light, other times with artificial light and a manipulation of materials. These concerns occupied Irwin from the beginning of his artistic career, even when he was still working with such traditional materials as oil on canvas. Indeed, Irwin had set out to create “a painting that does not begin and end at an edge but rather starts to take in and become involved with the space or environment around it.” His breakthrough discs played with perception in such a way that the distinctions between solid and void—that is, the divisions between form and space that are negotiated in myriad ways in the previous galleries—are utterly blurred. Although the discs are projected nearly two feet away from the wall, they disappear into it. Perceptually, the form is fully integrated into its surrounding space.

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