previews

Mask, 1958.

New York

Ellsworth Kelly

Whitney Museum of American Art
99 Gansevoort Street
August 10–November 3, 2003

Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego | Downtown
1100 and 1001 Kettner Boulevard
January 19–April 13, 2003

Following the artist’s massive 1996 Guggenheim retrospective, Ellsworth Kelly’s oeuvre has been sliced and diced into ever-finer morsels, from his early drawings to his relief paintings and Spectrums. Now comes an exhibition organized by curator Toby Kamps around Red Blue Green, 1963, a major canvas in the museum’s collection. The show and its catalogue, with essays by Kamps, Roberta Bernstein, Sarah Rich, and Dave Hickey, focus on a group of fourteen large-scale paintings as well as source materials from 1958 to 1965, a period when Kelly further blurred the line between figure and ground and embraced color combinations that packed a knockout optical punch.