Olitski belongs to the second generation of American Abstract Expressionists who carried on the legacy of the post-war New York School. The artist revived the ways of building fields of colour and attempted to dematerialize them in order to make them even brighter and more luminous. Red Flush is representative of this exploration. The spatial tension is created within the canvas by the weight of the coloured size and the execution of the forms, which seem suspended. Like an allusion to the history of geometric abstraction in a work designed to reveal the story of coloured abstraction, the small green circle stabilizes, or destabilizes, the orange and red fields, and introduces an atypical gestural dynamic for a “colorfield” painter with a penchant for flatness.
© Estate of Jules Olitski / VAGA, New York / SOCAN (2020)