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Art & Design

Jackson Pollock, Magic Lantern, 1949, Gift of Mrs. Peggy Guggenheim

On View

Jackson Pollock

gallery location RA305.GranoffGallery

Magic Lantern

Jackson Pollock American, 1912-1956
Magic Lantern, 1949
Oil, enamel, and carpet tacks on canvas
108.9 x 55.2 cm (42 7/8 x 21 3/4 inches)
Gift of Mrs. Peggy Guggenheim 54.005

Among Pollock’s earliest poured paintings, Magic Lantern reveals his tight control of a technique through which he covered a canvas with looping skeins of color. The free-form automatist drawings of the Surrealists inspired Pollock in his development of a personal language of abstraction. Improvising with gesture and materials, he used a variety of available paints to create the dense surface of this compact image and scattered it with carpet tacks to intensify its physicality. Unlike his later poured paintings, Magic Lantern has an intimate scale that encourages close examination.

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