Click to skip to site content
Collection > Agnes Martin >

Untitled #2

1977

  • Medium

    India ink, graphite and gesso on canvas

  • Dimensions

    Frame: 73 1/8 x 73 1/8 x 2 in. (185.8 x 185.7 x 5.1 cm)72 x 72 x 2 in. (182.88 x 182.88 x 5.08 cm)

  • Credit

    The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
    The Barry Lowen Collection

  • Accession number

    85.68

  • Object label

    ​From 1963 onward, Agnes Martin stuck nearly exclusively to a pared-down vocabulary of ruler-lined, penciled grids and six-by-six-foot canvases, primed with a thin layer of white gesso. In Untitled #2, India ink washes across the surface of alternately thin and wide horizontal intervals forming rectangles. Seen up close, the painting is logical, mechanical, and austere, while from a distance it seems to emanate a diffuse haze, perhaps recalling gray wintry light. Despite being completely abstract, Martin’s paintings are frequently associated with landscapes. The artist objected to this interpretation, saying that she wanted her work to elicit the quality of response that people have “when they leave themselves behind,” often experienced in nature, as when crossing an empty beach to look at the ocean. Thus her painting is one “field of vision” among others, like waterfalls or starry skies, to enter into.