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Joan Mitchell
Bracket [right panel], 1989
Artwork image is not available online.

Artwork Info

Artwork title
Bracket [right panel]
Artist name
Joan Mitchell
Date created
1989
Classification
painting
Medium
oil on canvas
Dimensions
three joined panels, overall: 106 1/2 in. × 185 3/4 in. (270.51 cm × 471.81 cm)
Credit
The Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
Copyright
© Estate of Joan Mitchell
Permanent URL
https://www.sfmoma.org/artwork/FC.838.C
Artwork status
Not on view at this time.

Audio Stories

What do others see in Bracket?

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transcripts

SFX: Quiet chords, something ethereal and breathy like an organ. Collage of vox pop voices begins.  

 

WOMAN 1:  

This color…I think of… 

 

MAN 1:  

This one reminds me of, um… 

 

MAN 2:  

I see… 

 

WOMAN 1:  

This burgundy. This rich, dark burgundy, it’s like the color of leather used on books in a college library… 

 

MAN 1:  

Pumpkins.  

 

WOMAN 2:  

And there was this beach. The sand there was a very specific color like the blush that’s inside seashells. A little bit of a blush of pink … 

 

WOMAN 3:  

This orangey-clay color really reminds me of Canyon de Chelly, uh, which is out in New Mexico, or Arizona? And it feels so dry when you’re at the top. 00:11:18 It’s just, you know, a vastness of one color. 

  

MAN 2:  

Growing up in the ’70s my mother had a number of appliances that were this color. Some called it avocado. Others called it “Acapulco Gold”. I distrust this color intensely.  

 

WOMAN 2:  

And we turned a corner and as far as the eye could see was this field of sunflowers, just yellow, yellow, yellow… 

 

WOMAN 1:  

This blue, it’s-it’s just the most perfect bright sky blue on a very sunny, hot summer day.  

 

MAN 3:  

And a memory where I’m sitting outside on the lawn and I’m staring up at the house that’s this pale yellow color and my mom is coming out of the door looking down. I felt very, very safe and-and happy. 

 

WOMAN 1:  

And looking up at the sky and just that feeling of having the whole day ahead of you. 

 

SFX: Tones continue to build for a few seconds, then end sharply. 

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Audio Description

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transcripts

NARRATOR:

This is a multicolored abstract painting by Joan Mitchell. She made it in 1989. It stands 8 feet tall and stretches 15 feet wide. The canvas is divided into three parts, with the center being the largest. If you stand facing the center of the painting, you may experience the sensation of being enveloped by cascading, swirling colors. 

Mitchell’s wide sweeping brushstrokes fill the painting, switching direction, flipping and curving, sometimes doubling back on themselves, leaving bright colors behind. Throughout the painting, jeweled greens, deep burgundies, bright blues, butter yellows, and pumpkin oranges bump up and wind around each other. Creamy pinks and fluffy whites fill the outer edges.  

 There are vertical seams where the painting’s three fabric panels join together. Many of Mitchell’s brushstrokes begin in one panel and finish in the next, making the painting feel like a cohesive whole. The center panel features rich, churning areas of color laid down on top of each other, dominated by a large patch of brilliant royal blue at the top. The far left panel contains similar colors, with meaty, short strokes of burgundy showing through. The far right panel adds pools of avocado greens and a patch of sunflower yellow.  

 Mitchell said she wanted to capture the feeling of a landscape.  

 

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Other Works by Joan Mitchell

See other works by Joan Mitchell

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