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Guston was an important abstract expressionist painter in the 1950s, who controversially returned to figurative work in the late 1960s. His early abstract paintings were composed of shimmering combinations of short vertical and horizontal brushstrokes in pinks, reds and blues. Discussing The Return, Guston said that he saw the forms in the picture as being like figures who had been away for some time and who were now returning - jostling each other a little as they came.

July 2012