The catalogue of Smith's exhibition at the Whitechapel Art Gallery in 1959 explains that from 1957-9 Smith was 'preoccupied with the problems involved in giving form to the pictorial expression of light' The paintings of this period attempt to depict light through the form of the objects that displace it. Smith commented on the Tate's closely related still-life of the same year, 'Bottles in Light and Shadow' that this was one of a series of pictures, 'all attempting to state a particular experience of still-life objects in a room. Also a particular kind of light and darkness which constantly changes their identity.'
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