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The cross is a recurrent motif in Rainer's painting and in his prints. This print is one of a series of cross images. Each was printed from the same plate in different states. The first in the series - this image - was printed in black. Rainer subsequently reworked the plate, hatching it more extensively, and then printed a second image in blue. Further frenzied hatching led to cross images printed in red and green respectively. A clue to the meaning of this progressive activity is given in Rainer's statement that 'I tried to break away, but it was impossible ... the truth of the picture only grew as it became darker and darker'.