Joaquín Torres-García. Construction in White and Black. 1938

Joaquín Torres-García

Construction in White and Black


On view
Oil on paper mounted on wood
31 3/4 x 40 1/8" (80.7 x 102 cm)
Gift of Patricia Phelps de Cisneros in honor of David Rockefeller
Object number
Painting and Sculpture
This work is on view on Floor 6, in Special Exhibitions Gallery North, with 7 other works online.
Joaquín Torres-García has 11 works online.
There are 2,104 paintings online.

This painting belongs to the series of gridded, bichromatic, abstract compositions Torres–García made between 1935 and the early 1940s. In this work, irregular, geometric forms evoke primal architectonic structures, and the dramatic contrast between light and shadow on the many planes creates an effect of depth and volume. The painting reflects the artist's deep engagement with the indigenous art and architecture of the Americas and, in particular, his interest in Incan stonework. The strong shading in each rectangular compartment gives the impression of stacked blocks, visually mimicking Incan masonry.

Gallery label from New Perspectives in Latin American Art, 1930–2006: Selections from a Decade of Acquisitions, November 21, 2007–February 25, 2008

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