This unique portrait of Mark Rothko captures his astonishing use of color as it illustrates the story of his life, career, struggles, and philosophy.
Mark Rothko’s work is among the most recognizable in modern art history. His huge color-field works enjoy enormous popularity for their luminosity, moodiness, and immersive qualities. But he didn’t always paint in bold, simple swaths of color. This graphic biography traces Rothko’s entire life, from his boyhood emigration from Russia to America, to his suicide in 1970. It touches on his schooling and early work for the WPA in the 1930s; the evolution of his art from representational to purely abstract; and the dawning of his artistic philosophy, which took him farther and farther away from the material world and toward a universally emotional and expressionist modality. The book’s finely detailed drawings are in Rothko’s signature colors and draw readers into his fascinating creative journey. While Rothko the artist was largely misunderstood during his lifetime, this unique graphic biography offers a way of making sense of his life and of decoding the visual language he invented.
Francesco Matteuzzi is a journalist, writer and author of numerous graphic biographies.