(1888 – 1976), Germany

Josef Albers Artworks

Josef Albers' colour theories and paintings, which emphasise the role of colour over that of form, promote an approach to painting that is based on observation and experimentation.

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Homage to the Square

As a painter, Albers is most remembered for his 'Homage to the Square' series, which he began in 1950 and worked on for the following 26 years. The paintings in this series are defined by a successive superimposition of squares upon one another, sometimes in varying shades of a single colour (Departing in Yellow, 1964) and sometimes in complementary colours (a painting in red and blue, titled Homage to the Square: Against Deep Blue, from 1955). Albers painted directly from the tube with a palette knife as a way of creating a 'pure' painting, free of brushstrokes.

Through their abstracted forms and solid colours, Albers' paintings contemplate human emotion and the light of different times of day and season. Albers was particularly interested in the nuanced chromatic or tonal juxtaposition of colours, once remarking that although midnight and noon cannot exist together in life, they can in a painting.

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Variant Orange Wall by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting
Josef Albers Variant Orange Wall, 1948–1956 Oil on masonite
60.5 x 87.5 cm
Robilant+Voena Contact Gallery
Study for Tautonym by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting, works on paper
Josef Albers Study for Tautonym, c. 1944 Oil on blotting paper
38.7 x 54.3 cm
David Zwirner Contact Gallery
Homage to the Square by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting
Josef Albers Homage to the Square, 1963 Oil on Masonite
40.6 x 40.6 cm
David Zwirner
Homage to the Square by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting
Josef Albers Homage to the Square, 1969 Oil on Masonite
40.6 x 40.6 cm
LGDR Enquire
Homage to the Square by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting
Josef Albers Homage to the Square, 1969 Oil on Masonite
40.6 x 40.6 cm
LGDR Enquire
Study for Homage to the Square: Wet and Dry by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting
Josef Albers Study for Homage to the Square: Wet and Dry, 1969 Oil on Masonite
40.6 x 40.6 cm
LGDR Enquire
Structural Constellation (JAAF 1976.3.1534) by Josef Albers contemporary artwork works on paper, drawing
Josef Albers Structural Constellation (JAAF 1976.3.1534), c. 1955–1958 Ink on paper
58.4 x 45.7 cm
Waddington Custot Contact Gallery
Study for Homage to the Square: “Persistent” (JAAF 1976.1.610) by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting
Josef Albers Study for Homage to the Square: “Persistent” (JAAF 1976.1.610), 1960 Oil on masonite
61 x 61 cm
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Waddington Custot
Homage to the Square by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting
Josef Albers Homage to the Square, 1961 Oil on masonite
45.7 x 45.7 cm
Miles McEnery Gallery Enquire
Tectonische Gruppe (Tectonic group) by Josef Albers contemporary artwork mixed media
Josef Albers Tectonische Gruppe (Tectonic group), 1925 Sand blasted orange opaque glass, white etching, black paint
29.6 x 45.6 cm
Hauser & Wirth Enquire
Study to homage to the square: apodictic by Josef Albers contemporary artwork painting
Josef Albers Study to homage to the square: apodictic, 1950–1954 Oil on masonite
40.4 x 40.4 cm
Hauser & Wirth Enquire
Study for Graphic Tectonic (Ascension) by Josef Albers contemporary artwork works on paper
Josef Albers Study for Graphic Tectonic (Ascension), 1941 Ink and graphite on paper
56.2 x 43.5 cm
David Zwirner Contact Gallery
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