I was really looking forward to this big exhibtion of Mark Rothko’s late work, I read lots of reviews about how brilliant it was and how moving etc and how it supposed to be very spiritual and how the paintings moved around as you looked at them. The exhibition featured the series called the Seagram Murals, plus some of his last black paintings and grey paintings.
Untitled 1969; Mark Rothko
Well i felt a complete philistine, they left me cold.. an invitation hovers to look through the frames into the darkness exists, but to be frank it is not an invitation I found attractive. Not long after he finished these paintings Rothko committed suicide and to me the psychic dark place which I felt in his work was uncomfortable. In the exhibition write up there was no a single reference to the fact he committed suicide afterwards, and I wondered about the decision to exclude this piece of information, when for so many artists a fact such as this would be a headline, and particularly for an artist who emphasised the experiential side of the work more than anything else.