Vija Celmins, “Burning Man,” 1966.
Oil on canvas, 20 x 22.5 inches.

Menil Collection
November 18, 2010 – February 20, 2011

Throughout much of her career, Vija Celmins has been known for her captivating paintings and drawings of starry night skies, fragile spider webs, and barren desert floors—quiet, expansive worlds meticulously executed in gradations of black and grey. As a young artist in Los Angeles during the early 1960s, however, Celmins’s work was marked by a distinctly different tone, one influenced by the violence of the era and the mass media that represented it.

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