Oil no. 10, 1946
Oil on canvas, 40 x 40 inches
Signed and dated Jonson/46 lower left
Signed, dated and titled on the reverse
Private collection, New York.
Christie's, New York, 30 November 1999, lot 127.
Private collection, Kentucky, acquired from the above.
Christie's, New York, 29 November 2007, lot 122.
Acquired by the present owner from the above
New York, Berry-Hill Galleries, Inc., Raymond Jonson: Pioneer Modernist Painter of New Mexico, February 11-March 1, 1986, no. 20
Jacksonville, Florida, Museum of Contemporary Art, Contemporary Visions: A Focus on Jacksonville Collections, January 25-April 6, 2008
Berry-Hill Galleries, Inc., Raymond Jonson: Pioneer Modernist Painter of New Mexico, exhibition catalogue, New York, 1986, p. 20, no. 20, cover illustration
Arts Magazine, vol. 60, 1986, p. 118, illustrated
Raymond Jonson, who spent his working life in New Mexico, was a founding member of The Transcendental Painting Group, organized in 1938 by nine artists working in the Southwest, whose stated aim was “the development and presentation of various types of non-representational painting.” By that time his work had evolved from imagery derived from the natural world to abstract shapes and forms suggested by nature.
Oil No. 10 is from Jonson’s series of 17 works entitled Pictographical Compositions, based upon the sensations evoked in the artist by Indian rock wall paintings and carvings, enlivened here by the rhythm of New Mexico’s mountainous landscape. The variety of textures found in this work were a central concern of Jonson’s method, which he achieved by manipulating various brushes, brayers, and other implements to alter the sensations of perceived color and light refraction within each shape.