Richard Artschwager
Triptych III, 1967

As its title implies, Triptych III is a three-panel object intended to hang on the wall. Artschwager consciously references medieval and Renaissance altarpieces, yet in place of Catholic iconography we find the artist’s trademark marbled, caramel-colored Formica, a material conventionally used for kitchen countertops and cheap office tables.

Pop artists Andy Warhol and Claes Oldenburg also satirically elevated the stuff of daily life in their work, but Artschwager’s combination of a mass-produced material with simple, geometric forms is more akin to that of Minimalists such as Donald Judd. The Formica’s allover pattern recalls the gestural canvases of American action painters such as Jackson Pollock.

Artwork Info

Artwork title
Triptych III
Artist name
Richard Artschwager
Date created
1967
Classification
painting
Medium
on wood
Dimensions
dimensions variable
Date Acquired
2003
Credit
Collection SFMOMA
Purchase through a gift of Phyllis C. Wattis and anonymous donors
Copyright
© Estate of Richard Artschwager / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Permanent URL
https://www.sfmoma.org/artwork/2003.1
Artwork Status
Not on view at this time.

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