ROTHKO CHAPEL (Mark Rothko)
The Rothko Chapel is a non-denominational chapel that was conceived and created by Mark Rothko, the Russian-born painter who worked in America and is famous for his abstract paintings of large blocks of color.
The eight paintings, including three triptychs (paintings of more than one panel) are all painted mostly in black with a variation in color and hue. They are by no means fourteen black panels. The colors deepen and fade as one moves in front of the work and no two panels are the same. Large canvases, they take up almost the entirety of the walls and imbue the space with a serenity not seen in most religious spaces. The tone of the room is meditative and tranquil and the paintings seem to at once pulse with life and be at perfect stillness.
The Chapel was finished and dedicated in 1971, but Mark Rothko did not live to see his final product. He committed suicide in his studio on February 20, 1970. This space is a testament to his ability to communicate through deceptively simple paintings. His work is characterized as abstract expressionism but he often spoke of rejecting that title or any. He saw himself, and art, as outside of the labels that seem to be necessary to categorize what we feel and see.