Twombly is a key member of the generation of American artists immediately following the Abstract Expressionists. Between 1967 and 1971 he produced a number of works on gray grounds. The largest in the series, this monumental painting features terse, colorless scrawls, reminiscent of chalk on a blackboard, that form no actual words. Twombly made this work using an unusual technique: he sat on the shoulders of a friend, who shuttled back and forth along the length of the canvas, thus allowing the artist to create his fluid, continuous lines.
Gallery label from 2007.