Jasper Johns (American, born Augusta, Georgia, 1930)
Oil on paper, mounted on paperboard
12 x 16 3/4 in. (30.5 x 42.5 cm)
Gift of William S. Lieberman, in honor of the artist, 1999
Not on view
This exquisite, tonally modulated white monochrome is Johns' work on paper most closely related to the large encaustic painting White Flag (1998.329). The drawing was made two years after the completion of the painting. It is typical of Johns to repeat an image in a different medium in order, as he has said, "to observe the play between the two: the image and the medium. … One can take an aspect of another work and exaggerate it, draw attention to it, give it an importance it did not have in the original work. With a slight re-emphasis of elements one finds that one can behave very differently toward [an image], see it in a different way."
[Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, until 1958; sold on December 9, 1958 to Lieberman]; William S. Lieberman, New York (1958–99; on extended loan to MMA, 1991–99; his gift to MMA)
New York. Whitney Museum of American Art. "The Drawings of Jasper Johns," February 21–April 7, 1991, not in catalogue.
London. Anthony d'Offay Gallery. "Jasper Johns, Flags: 1955–1994," June 20–July 27, 1996, no. 4.
Roberta Bernstein. Jasper Johns' Paintings and Sculptures 1954–1974. Ann Arbor, 1985, pp. 8–11, 142.
David Sylvester. Jasper Johns, Flags: 1955–1994. Exh. cat., Anthony d'Offay Gallery. London, 1996, pp. 4–5, ill. p. 75.