- Alex Katz born 1927
- Oil paint on hardboard
- Support: 309 x 404 x 4 mm
frame: 322 x 424 x 34 mm
- Tate / National Galleries of Scotland
- ARTIST ROOMS Acquired jointly with the National Galleries of Scotland through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
Katz explores the boundaries between abstract, flat surface and expressive realism in this simple, decorative subject. He has been painting flowers since the 1960s, often painted during summer residencies in Maine. The cropped, flattened composition owes a debt to Japanese art. Katz is well-known for his large paintings, whose bold simplicity and unmodulated colours are now seen as precursors of Pop Art. Small oil paintings such as this one are sketched from life and often intended to be scaled up into larger works, but their economic execution and visible brushstrokes reveal an intimate side to his practice. He says, "A sketch is very direct. It is working empirically, inside of an idea."