In “Seven Colors” (from the series, “Simple Text”), Charlesworth uses dry paint pigments in a palette of primary colors, along with aesthetically minimal objects to suggest a meditative space in which the elements of art-making (color, form and shape) create a state of reverence. Staged almost as offerings, the small dishes of pigment serve as the vehicle through which Charlesworth explored the subtle balance of form and content. At once homage and ritual act, “Seven Colors” celebrates the state of becoming, the coexistence of the physical and the transcendent.
Charlesworth (1947-2013) is considered a key member of the Pictures Generation and is known for her conceptually-driven and visually alluring photo-based works. Through her process, forms and interventions, exacting forms, assiduous process, and subjective interventions, Charlesworth aimed to subvert and deconstruct cultural imagery. Her work has been the subject of one-person exhibitions at a number of institutions including the major survey, “Sarah Charlesworth: Doubleworld,” at the New Museum, New York (2015), which traveled to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2017); and a retrospective organized by SITE Santa Fe (1997), which traveled to numerous other institutions. Charlesworth’s photographs appear in museum collections throughout the United States and Europe, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; the National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.; the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; and the Stedelijk van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven; among many others.