Josef Albers: Color is a Whole World

Josef Albers, Study for Homage to the Square with color study (Study for Arctic Bloom), ca. 1965, oil on blotting paper, 12 x 12 inches (The Josef Albers Museum Quadrat Bottrop, © 2017 The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation / ARS, NY)
Josef Albers, Study for Homage to the Square with color study (Study for Arctic Bloom), ca. 1965, oil on blotting paper, 12 x 12 inches (The Josef Albers Museum Quadrat Bottrop, © 2017 The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation / ARS, NY)

Painter José Heerkens reflects on color and the work of Josef Albers.

"Even knowing that visual language is a totally different language than the language of words, each acting on its own level, color is still a very difficult subject to describe. Any form can be described, but trying to catch color in words is impossible... The only sense organ that brings us in contact with color is the eye. In order to make color to a concrete factor that we can see, it needs a form, a shape or outline. Albers made the ingenious discovery that the square as a form could be subservient to color. This form gave him the freedom to be concerned only with color; he named it Homage to the Square... Looking at these works I read the sincerity of the approach as well as the fun of making, searching and finding. Everything I’ve learned about color started by looking at Homage to the Square."