We're looking at a 1949 painting and what you'll notice is that that's divided structure of the so- called multiform period has become quite a bit more elegant now. These zones continue to be stacked, but you'll notice that there are no more circles. There are no more rounded edges anymore. Rather we have these floating largely rectangular shapes. Stacked in a space and kind of hovering off of that ground. Now, why do I say hovering? Because I'd like to come back to Hans Hofmann and think about that idea of push and pull in terms of color. His idea of warm colors coming out and hitting us in the eye, cool colors receding away from us. And what we're seeing are a lot of very very specific color relationships that Rothko is using to have certain zones advance off the canvas toward you, and have other zones retreat away from you. Notice, by the way, that the paint is a little bit thicker and more opaque than paintings we've been looking at so far today. Now this is not a heavily painted painting. It's still painted quite thinly, but not stained and certainly not watercolor. And it's not oil treated like watercolor, which is where we started a couple paintings ago now. Rather and I'm looking at this central zone here. With this very deep blue kind of a purplish, coolish blue color and it's quite dark. And it's quite opaque as a matter of fact. It's not that complicated of a color. It's one form, and it's of a kind. Now, this is kind of a transitional moment for Rothko, as he's beginning to elaborate space in this way. And he's beginning to understand how certain corners will react to the ability of a zone to be read against a ground behind it. However, he's not thinking so much in terms of transparency at this moment, it's something that very quickly he'll come back to. But something of a bit of an outlier in Rothko, dealing with opaque paint. Interestingly, dealing with opaque paint doesn't mean only these very very solid, forms, rather opaque paint can be painted rather thinly with streaks. A scumble, if you will. And what we're seeing here, very interestingly, is two complimentary colors even value, and remember the value is the darkness of the color. So you're not reading the orange or this red through the green. Because this is a viridian, it's very, very opaque. You can't see through the green, but rather, because it's painted so thinly, you're seeing little pockets of orange around it. And when it's painted super thinly, it's almost staining the canvas so that when you have these complimentary colors superimposed, it gets muddy. It gets very, very low chroma, kind of a brown, dirty color. However, contrast that with these very thick areas of green. I shouldn't say very thick, but more thick in totally opaque areas. Where now we really, truly see the color of that viridian. And this really, really pops. Pops not only against this brownish combination of tones around it, but really, really pops against that brilliant cadmium ground that you have just underneath it. So these colors really repel off of one another, and your eye doesn't really know how to reconcile the fact that these two things appear to be in the same plane, which of course, is on the picture plane of the painting, but your eye really wants to read one forward from the other. Now actually, what your eye usually would like to do is to read this orange as being forward, it's a warm color. They tend to advance toward our eye. But, very clearly, that orange color, that warm color, is the ground. And his green is on top of it. So, in a way, spatially, these forms are working in your eye totally opposite than the way they are coloristically. This is very deliberate. It's something that Rothko began to do here, and made the rest of his career really about these kind of floating relationships, veils of color. In other words, Rothko sets up a tension between his use of color and figure ground relationships. Here, we see the figure boldly inscribed over the ground, but because that ground is a far warmer color than the figure, it competes quite strongly for our attention. And this allows our eyes to rock back and forth as Rothko's forms variously advance and retreat from our viewing space. Some wet-in-wet painting, we see this very blurry brushstroke here. By this blurry appearance, I can tell you that this ground, this orange-red ground, was still wet when this violet zone, this very narrow horizontal rectangle of a zone was put on. In some areas, that reads as a normal brush stroke. And then in other areas, it's really blurred into the ground wet-in-wet. So again, you start to get that kind of muddy combination of colors. Moving up into this white zone, we see that this white zone is actually a combination of many, many zones within it. If we really zoom in here, we can see this very very beautiful wet-in-wet blending. And you can see the brush stroke kind of doing these little S curves in here, which really set these marks, horizontally stacked across the painting, off of the more dense white around it. As well as off of this kind of beige, ochre-ish streak coming across. The way that this is done is that veil over veil over veil of color is applied to the canvas. But here maybe veil is not the right word since these are quite opaque applications of paint. Meaning that there's not a ton of solvent added. There's none a ton of linseed oil added, although there's some. But rather, this is kind of a conventional consistency of paint that is brushed back and forth across the canvas. Hold that thought because you're not going to see a lot of it. And in a moment, we'll look at something very, very different. Now getting into really, really interesting color relationships, this very warm magenta played off this very cool, cool blue approaching violet. Played off of this very, very hot, exquisitely hot, orange/red, applied thinly with that white coming through it. Again, okay, a little bit of that watercolor-ish technique still in play. These three colors, you have a beautiful painting, just right there. Never mind the fact that this is just one of hundreds, quite literally, of very, very beautiful passages of paint. Now were talking about a very very virtuosic painter, and that virtuosic technique is really, really just coming to the fore here, and it's no coincidence that it happens for Rothko when he's focusing on the materiality of the paint. On the texture and the surface qualities of the finished painting. He's not worried about these little aquatic animals, or vegetables, or whatever they are. He's not worried about Surrealism. He's not thinking about biomorphic ideas as a way to get out of figuration, or in the space between figuration and abstraction. Here we have purely abstract paint, purely abstract painting about physical qualities of paint, and I think as we see a couple other paintings from the so-called mature Rothko period, you'll begin to understand how these things develop off of one another and become increasingly complex.