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Like Morris Louis, Noland has worked in series, executing several works which explore a single motif. 'Gift' is one of several paintings, made in the late 1950s and early 1960s, which use a simple target form as their basic idea. Unlike Jasper Johns's target paintings, made around the same time, Noland does not intend the image to be read as a target. Instead, this is a purely formal device, providing Noland with a ready made structure for his painting. The concentric rings also concentrate the effect of the colour. In these ways, Noland's use of flattened forms and colour deliberately avoids any sense of narrative or personal expression.

September 2004