NG
Nicholas Gallery
Belfast
Medium
Signature
Signed and dated

Abstract painter Mark Tobey strived to represent the mystical through art. Inspired by international travels, Eastern religion, Arabic calligraphy, classical music, and the emerging modes of Abstract Expressionism, Tobey created a unique visual language of all-over painting and gestural abstraction, which he called “white writing.” “What I had learned in the Orient had affected more than I realized,” he said. “In a short time white writing emerged. I had a totally new conception of painting.” When working in this technique, Tobey would place white calligraphic marks and symbols atop an abstract field composed of thousands of densely interwoven brushstrokes.

Collected by major museums
Tate, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Anderson Collection at Stanford University
Selected exhibitions
2021
Mark Tobey: Nature's PatternsAnders Wahlstedt Fine Art
2020
Americans in Paris: Artists in the City of Light, 1946–1965Grey Art Gallery
2014
Modernism in the Pacific Northwest: The Mythic and the MysticalSeattle Art Museum
View all

The Watchful Eye, 1975

Mixed media on paper
10 × 6 3/10 in
25.5 × 16 cm
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Location
Belfast
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NG
Nicholas Gallery
Belfast
Medium
Signature
Signed and dated

Abstract painter Mark Tobey strived to represent the mystical through art. Inspired by international travels, Eastern religion, Arabic calligraphy, classical music, and the emerging modes of Abstract Expressionism, Tobey created a unique visual language of all-over painting and gestural abstraction, which he called “white writing.” “What I had learned in the Orient had affected more than I realized,” he said. “In a short time white writing emerged. I had a totally new conception of painting.” When working in this technique, Tobey would place white calligraphic marks and symbols atop an abstract field composed of thousands of densely interwoven brushstrokes.

Collected by major museums
Tate, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Anderson Collection at Stanford University
Selected exhibitions (3)
Other works by Mark Tobey
Other works from Nicholas Gallery
Related works