Photo © President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
2001.1
People
Otto Piene, German (Laasphe, Westphalia, Germany 1928 - 2014 Berlin, Germany)
Title
Untitled (Red)
Classification
Drawings
Work Type
drawing
Date
1967
Culture
German
Persistent Link
https://hvrd.art/o/175128
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Acrylic(?), flame-treated on pigment-coated card
Dimensions
68.4 x 48 cm (26 15/16 x 18 7/8 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • Signed: in graphite at l.r.: Piene (encircled) 67
  • inscription: l.r., black ink, handwritten, in artist's hand: 6 [encircled]
  • inscription: l.r., in graphite, handwritten, in artist's hand: f.N. / O Piene [Piene encircled] 67
Provenance
Artist created 1967, gift; to Nan Rosenthal (1967-2001), gift; to the Busch-Reisinger Museum, 2001.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Busch-Reisinger Museum, Gift of Nan Rosenthal in honor of the Artist
Copyright
© Otto Piene Estate
Accession Year
2001
Object Number
2001.1
Division
Modern and Contemporary Art
Contact
am_moderncontemporary@harvard.edu
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Descriptions
Description
The object is one of Piene’s fire "gouaches," a vertical chain of five circles of dry pigment that has been scorched and blackened with the aid of fire, on a pigment-coated board. The blistered, sooty texture of the circles and halo effect of the burning procedure contrast strongly with the red pigment coating of the support. According to the donor, to whom the object was dedicated, the support is pre-coated paper that Piene referred to as "Swedish carton," and that fades fairly rapidly when exposed to light. The dry pigment was probably ignited and burned using a bunch of candles. (The burning of the pigment on the recto side has penetrated the board, as can be seen from scorch marks on the verso.) Otherwise, the apparent good condition of this object stems from the fact that it has "never" been exposed to light.
Publication History

Peter Nisbet and Joseph Koerner, The Busch-Reisinger Museum, Harvard University Art Museums, ed. Peter Nisbet, Harvard University Art Museums and Scala Publishers Ltd. (Cambridge, MA and London, England, 2007), p. 54

Subjects and Contexts

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