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Cy Twombly

/Works and biography

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Untitled, 1967
Oil based house paint and wax crayon on canvas, 127 x 170.2 cm
Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, Hannelore B. and Rudolph B. Schulhof Collection, bequest of Hannelore B. Schulhof, 2012
2012.97
© Cy Twombly Foundation


Twombly learned the gestural and lyrical visual language of Abstract Expressionism at Black Mountain College (NC) in the early 1950s. He coupled this with his interest in the history and literature of the classical world. Twombly’s compositions, in their unpremeditated yet controlled character, evoke spontaneous handwriting. In 1966 he commenced a series of paintings of rhythmically repetitive white, often looped, lines on gray canvases, recalling blackboards. This painting belongs to this important cycle of works that Twombly perpetuated into the early 1970s. The script on the bare background is at once accessible to the viewer through its simplicity yet distant as it triggers the impossible desire to decipher it.

credits: Hangar Design Group