Beauford Delaney. Composition 16. 1954-56

Beauford Delaney Composition 16 1954-56

  • MoMA, Floor 4, 405 The David Geffen Galleries

In 1953, at the age of fifty-two, Delaney left New York for Paris, where he would live for the rest of his life. Delaney did not begin to paint gestural abstractions such as this one until after this move. He began Composition 16 the following year, the “16” probably meaning that this was his sixteenth painting in Paris. Using densely applied oils to paint ribbonlike swirls in greens, reds, and yellows—colors that would dominate his palette in both abstract and figurative works over the next two decades—Delaney realized his goal to “remember the sculpture and structure of color.”

Gallery label from "Collection 1940s—1970s", 2019
Oil on canvas
31 1/2 x 37" (80 x 94 cm)
Committee on Painting and Sculpture Funds
Object number
© 2021 Estate of Beauford Delaney, by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire, Court Appointed Administrator.
Painting and Sculpture

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