TABLE OF CONTENTS

PRINT May 1971

An Interview with Robert Ryman

Do you make white paintings?

No, it may seem that way superficially, but there are a lot of nuances and there’s color involved. Always the surface is used. The gray of the steel comes through; the brown of the corrugated paper comes through; the linen comes through, the cotton (which is not the same as the paint—it seems white): all of those things are considered. It’s really not monochrome painting at all. The white just happened because it’s a paint and it doesn’t interfere. I could use green, red, yellow, but why? It’s a challenge for me to use paint and make something happen with it, without having to be involved in reds, greens, and everything which would confuse things. But I work with color all the time. I don’t think of myself as making white paintings. I make paintings; I’m a painter. White paint is my medium. There’s a lot of color involved. I don’t mean color like red, green,

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.