Julie L Belcove profiles painter Jasper Johns on the occasion of the upcoming exhibition Jasper Johns: Regrets at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, on view beginning March 15, 2014.
The show will feature John's newest paintings "paintings and works on paper, predominantly in greys and blacks, all riffing on the same image of a man sitting, with one leg tucked under him, on an old-fashioned iron bed, clutching his head in his hand as if in despair. If there were any question as to the mental anguish portrayed here, Johns has stamped an emphatic 'Regrets, Jasper Johns' on each piece. The series, the latest from the renowned but elusive artist, is also titled 'Regrets.' " Johns' based the series on a photograph owned by Francis Bacon that pictures fellow painter Lucian Freud "perched on the quilt-covered bed and hiding his face in his hand, newspapers at his feet."