Bridget Riley, English, b. 1931, b. England
Arrest 2, 1965
Acrylic on linen
Unframed: 6 feet 4 3/4 inches x 6 feet 3 inches (194.95 x 190.5 cm) Framed: 6 feet 7 3/8 inches x 6 feet 5 3/4 inches x 2 3/4 inches (201.61 x 197.49 x 6.99 cm)
Purchase: acquired through the generosity of the William T. Kemper Foundation---Commerce Bank, Trustee, 2001.1
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Location: Gallery L4
Bridget Riley defines nature as a “dynamism of visual forces – an event rather than an appearance.” Her aim is to free these forces from their descriptive roles and reorganize them to create abstract rhythms, tempos, contrasts and reversals that parallel the human emotional structure. The rippling vertical lines in Arrest 2 modulate from black to cool gray, creating vibrant spatial illusions that both delight and frustrate the eye.
Art critics of the 1960s dubbed Riley’s optical painting style Op Art. By the time her work was exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1965, it already had been embraced by the fashion and design industry. Today her paintings are inspiring a new generation of abstractionists because of what they say about the magic of seeing.