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Jasper Johns and the influence of Ludwig Wittgenstein 1974

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JASPER JOHNS AND THE INFLUENCE OF LUDWIG WITTGENSTEIN by PETER HIGGINSON B.A., University of British Columbia, 1972 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in the Department of Fine Arts We accept this.thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA July, 1974 In p resent ing t h i s t he s i s in p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f the requirements f o r an advanced degree at the Un i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the L i b r a r y s ha l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e fo r reference and study. I f u r t he r agree tha t permiss ion for ex tens i ve copying of t h i s t hes i s f o r s c ho l a r l y purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by h i s r ep re sen ta t i ve s . It i s understood that copying or p u b l i c a t i o n of t h i s t hes i s f o r f i n a n c i a l ga in s ha l l not be al lowed without my w r i t t e n pe rm iss ion . Depa rtment The Un i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia Vancouver 8, Canada ABSTRACT The influences upon Johns' work stem from varied f i e l d s of i n t e r e s t s , ranging from Leonardo to John Cage, Hart Crane to Duchamp, Marshall McLuhan to Wittgenstein. The r o l e that Wittgenstein's philosophy, plays has never been f u l l y appreciated. What discussion has occurred - namely Max Kozloff's and Rosalind Krauss' - shows an inadequacy either through a lack of understanding or a super- f i c i a l i t y towards the p h i l o s o p h i c a l views. An in-depth analysis on this,, subject i s invaluable i n f u l l y comprehending the ramifications of Johns' pa i n t i n g of the 60's. The i n t e n t i o n of t h i s paper i s to examine Wittgenstein's influence and assess how h i s method of seeking out meaning i n language i s used by Johns i n h i s paintings to explore meaning i n a r t . Johns' early work could perhaps be nutshelled as a reaction against the egocentricism of Abstract-Expressionism. Through the Flags, Targets, Alphabets and Numeral pieces he has suspended the formal issues that were prevalent i n the early f i f t i e s i n an attempt to provide a l l sides of the argument rather than some f a c i l e and unsatisfactory r e c o n c i l i a t i o n . Johns saw that the problems i n painting lay not i n wrong answers but i n the lack of understanding the nature of v i s u a l communication. It i s impossible to present the a r t i s t ' s s e l f since the 'success' of the art object involves an equally important member, the audience, and i t i s within t h i s dialogue that meaning l i e s . The object-paintings of t h i s early phase ask, what i s painting? and pose d i f f e r e n t suggestions with each being f e a s i b l e and relevant without being conclusive. Johns i n s i s t s on keeping the s i t u a t i o n incapable of any f i n a l r e s o l u t i o n . In 1959 Johns discovered Duchamp and h i s broader idea of art that moved away from r e t i n a l boundaries into a f i e l d where language, thought and v i s i o n acted upon one another. False Start, 1959, r e f l e c t s t h i s i n t e r e s t and can be seen not as any r a d i c a l change from former work, as Barbara Rose and Sidney T i l l i m suggest, but as i i i a development of previous ideas, now taking into consideration the r o l e language plays i n the reception of a painting. Wittgenstein began to i n t e r e s t Johns i n 1961. His analysis of meaning i n language set down i n the P h i l o s o p h i c a l Investigations not only shared a close a f f i n i t y to the 'art i s l i f e ' maxim of Johns, Rauschenberg and Cage but more importantly presented Johns with a methodology to c l a r i f y the d e f i n i t i o n of a r t . Like Duchamp, Wittgenstein saw the e s t a b l i s h i n g of meaning l y i n g outside the pro- blematic - there i s no s o l u t i o n since there i s no problem. The Investigations - a complete r e v e r s a l of the e a r l i e r Tractatus Logico Philosophicus which claimed that language i s a l o g i c a l p i c t u r i n g of fa c t s - e s s e n t i a l l y poses that the meaning of language l i e s i n i t s usage, that there i s no one a u t h o r i t a t i v e d e f i n i t i o n of a word but as many as there are uses for i t . Wittgenstein saw the r o l e of the philosopher not as one of providing new information but of c l e a r i n g up misconcep- tions through reviewing what we have already known. Philosophy i s 'a b a t t l e against the bewitchment of our i n t e l l i g e n c e by means of language'. Johns' paintings from 1961 on become such where he sees the r o l e of the a r t i s t as a b a t t l e against the bewitchment of our sight by not simply language but more s p e c i f i c a l l y , c r i t i c i s m . The C r i t i c Sees, 1961 and i t s attack on writers whose motives are very d i f f e r e n t from extending any v i s u a l awareness sets the stage for a c o l l e c t i o n of paintings that questions the whole aspect of schools of c r i t i c i s m with t h e i r polemical discussions as to how we should see. This i n t e r e s t i n meaning with a bias towards New York c r i t i c i s m i s understandable since i t was from here that the most i n t r i g u i n g and muddled ideas of Johns' work came and i n addition, he was painting at a period when the a r t i s t ' s aim was becoming more and more prescribed by what the c r i t i c proposed. Johns' largest canvas to date, According to What, 1964, i s an apologia of the notion of perception that he shares with Wittgenstein rather than a grand hommage iv to Duchamp. A Wittgenstinian analysis of Johns' post-1961 paintings not only gives an explanation of the imagery employed but reveals to us two fundamental issues inherent in them: looking is relative with the only common denominator being l i f e , which in turn shows criticism, in the controversial from Johns was used to experiencing i t , as more concerned with reinforcing individual claims rather than any desire to evolve a total awareness. As with Wittgenstein's philosophy of anthropocentrism, Johns does not advance any one theory. He does not, unlike the formalist interest, regard the problems of contemporary painting as empirical but as a blindness to the numerous inherent and unavoidable visual aspects in any one work. TABLE OF CONTENTS v ABSTRACT i i LIST OF PLATES v i INTRODUCTION 1 CHAPTER I : 1955 to 1961 4 CHAPTER II : Wittgenstein's Philosophy: A Synopsis 24 CHAPTER I I I : Johns and Wittgenstein: The State of C r i t i c i s m so Far 36 CHAPTER IV : Johns and Wittgenstein 45 CHAPTER V : Conclusion 70 FOOTNOTES 74 PLATES 90 BIBLIOGRAPHY 116 v i LIST OF PLATES PLATE I Flag, 1954 PLATE II Target With Plaster Casts, 1955 PLATE III Target with Four Faces, 1955 PLATE IV Construction with Toy Piano, 1954 PLATE V Untitled, 1954 PLATE VI Large Green Target, 1955 PLATE VII White Target, 1957 PLATE VIII Figure 5, 1955 PLATE IX Charles Demuth. I Saw The Figure 5 in Gold, PLATE X Gray Alphabets, 1956 PLATE XI Gray Numbers, 1958 PLATE XII Gray Alphabets, 1956 PLATE XIII Untitled, c.1954 PLATE XIV Tango, 1955 PLATE XV Andy Warhol Dance Diagram - Tango, 1962 PLATE XVI Canvas, 1956 PLATE XVII Drawer, 1957 PLATE XVIII Gray Rectangles, 1957 PLATE XIX Painting With a Ball, 1958 PLATE XX Tennyson, 1958 PLATE XXI The, 1957 PLATE XXII Shade, 1959 PLATE XXIII Magritte, Human Condition I, 1933 PLATE XXIV Delaunay, Windows on the City, 1912 PLATE XXV False Start, 1959 PLATE XXVI Magritte, The Use of Words, 1928-29 PLATE XXVII Jubilee, 1959 v i i PLATE XXVIII Out the Window, 1959 PLATE XXIX Thermometer, 1959 PLATE XXX P a i n t i n g w i t h Two B a l l s , 1960 PLATE XXXI D e v i c e C i r c l e , 1959 PLATE XXXII P a i n t i n g w i t h R u l e r and "Gray", 1960 PLATE XXXIII Leonardo da V i n c i , V i t r u v i a n Man , c. 1485-90 PLATE XXXIV D e v i c e , 1961-62 PLATE XXXV By t h e Sea, 1961 PLATE XXXVI Passage, 1962 PLATE XXXVII F o o l ' s House, 1962 PLATE XXXVIII Out the Window I I , 1962 PLATE XXXIX F i e l d P a i n t i n g , 1963-64 PLATE xxxx The C r i t i c Sees, 1961 PLATE XXXXI No, 1961 PLATE XXXXII P e r i s c o p e (Hart Crane) PLATE XXXXIII Land's End, 1963 PLATE XXXXIV D i v e r , 1962 PLATE xxxxv Watchman, 1964 PLATE XXXXVI A c c o r d i n g t o What, 1964 PLATE XXXXVII Duchamp Tu m'. 1918 PLATE XXXXVIII' Fragments - A c c o r d i n g t o What - Hinged Canvas, 1971 PLATE XXXXIX Cup 4 P i c a s s o , 1972 1 INTRODUCTION i 2 In a footnote to her a r t i c l e on Johns, Rosalind Krauss t a l k s of h i s i n i t i a - t i o n into Wittgenstein's philosophy.* Johns recounts that i n 1961 someone t o l d him the story Norman Malcolm writes of i n h i s reminiscences of Wittgenstein. 'Once a f t e r supper, Wittgenstein, my wife and I went for a walk on Midsummer Common [Cambridge, England]. We talked about the movements of the bodies of the s o l a r system. I t occured to Wittgenstein that the three of us should represent the movement of the sun, moon and earth r e l a t i v e to one another. My wife was the sun and maintained a steady pace across the meadow; I was the earth and c i r c l e d her at a t r o t . Wittgenstein took the most strenuous part of a l l , the moon and ran around me while I c i r c l e d my wife. Wittgenstein entered into t h i s game with great enthusiasm and seriousness, shouting i n s t r u c t i o n s at us as he r a n . ' 2 On hearing t h i s story Johns decided to read a l l the Wittgenstein he could. The appeal the t a l e had for him was one that s t i l l remains i n t r i n s i c to h i s work; the idea of game playing, but l i k e the philosopher, games to be played s e r i o u s l y not l i g h t l y . As language was f o r Wittgenstein's l a t e r philosophy so i s art f o r Johns - i n fa c t he has often expressed that painting i s a language. The int e n t i o n of t h i s paper i s to examine Wittgenstein's influence and discuss how h i s method of seeking out meaning i n language i s used by Johns to explore meaning i n a r t . For reasons of space, I have kept to the painting up to 1964 which marks the completion of perhaps h i s most important canvas so f a r , According to What. Since that time Johns has r e s t r i c t e d himself, on the whole, to graphics and only i n the l a s t year or so has begun a return to the paint medium. I w i l l f i r s t give an o v e r a l l view of his work from 1955-1961 as a necessary background to what follows. Before discussing the l a t e r p ainting from a Wittgenstinian viewpoint, i n Chapter 4, Chapter 2 w i l l be devoted to presenting as b r i e f l y as possible a synopsis of Wittgenstein's philosophy and Chapter 3 to a discussion of the present state of c r i t i c i s m on Wittgenstein's r o l e i n Johns' work. What must be stressed at t h i s stage i s that Johns i s not a philosopher i n the s t r i c t sense and h i s p r e d i s p o s i t i o n to Wittgenstein does not stem from a concern for the philosopher;!;s place i n any l i n g u i s t i c t r a d i t i o n . A p h i l o s o - p h i c a l inquiry into the 'accuracy' of Johns' comprehension of Wittgenstein would be p o i n t l e s s . Few philosophers themselves are i n agreement i n t h e i r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s and i t must be remembered that Johns' a p p l i c a t i o n was more than probably coloured by John Cage's influence. Cage's e c l e c t i s i s m has shown i t s e l f i n h i s a b i l i t y to l e t h i s ideas ' s l i d e without self-conscious e f f o r t into 3 areas f a r beyond conventional thought' - a f a s c i n a t i n g p r a c t i c e but impossible to evaluate s u c c e s s f u l l y from a purely p h i l o s o p h i c a l standpoint. CHAPTER ONE: 1955 to 1961 4 "Most of my thoughts Involve impurities .... I think i t i s a form of play, or form of exercise, and i t ' s i n part mental and i n part v i s u a l (and God knows what that i s ) . But that's one of the things we l i k e about the v i s u a l a r t s . The terms i n which we're accustomed to thinking are adulterated or abused. Or a term that we're not used to using or which we have not used i n our experience becomes very c l e a r . Or what i s e x p l i c i t suddenly i s n ' t . We l i k e the novelty of giving up what we know, and we l i k e the novelty of coming to know something we d i d not know. Otherwise, we would j u s t hold on to what we have, and that's not very i n t e r e s t i n g . " x 5 Jasper Johns, l i k e Robert Rauschenberg, began painting i n a period that was becoming steeped i n the successes and f a i l u r e s of Abstract Expressionism. By the early f i f t i e s i t had already begun to take on the visage of an academy of painting. In 1965, Barbara Rose wrote her a r t i c l e , 'The Second Generation: 2 Academy and Breakthrough' , and a t t r i b u t e d the i n s t i t u t i o n a l i z i n g of t h i s s t y l e to Rosenberg's 'The American Action Painters' of December, 1952. Rosenberg's a r t i c l e had a s i m i l a r e f f e c t on New York painters as Gleize's and Metzinger's surrogate manifesto,. Du Gubisme thad on the Paris a r t i s t s of 1912. Du Cubisme offered an explanation of Cubist aims as understood by i t s authors with the r e s u l t i n g absurdity that Bna^ue and Picasso's v i s i o n of a Cubist r e a l i t y got by-passed. Rosenberg's a r t i c l e , which likewise set down the common a s p i r a - tions of a number of a r t i s t s , also had novel r e s u l t s . Unwittingly he evoked a f o c a l i s i n g force that appealed on a n a t i o n a l i s t i c as well as an i n d i v i d u a l l e v e l : "This new painting does not constitute a school. To form a school i n modern times not only i s a new painting consciousness needed but a consciousness of that consciousness and even an insistence on c e r t a i n formulas. A school i s the r e s u l t of the linkage of p r a c t i c e with terminology - d i f f e r e n t paintings are affected by the same words. In the American Vanguard the words, as we s h a l l see, belong not to the a r t but to the i n d i v i d u a l a r t i s t s . What they think i n common i s represented only by what they do separately 1-^ Rosenberg provided the 'consciousness of that consciousness', a terminology and ultimately a movement that any American a r t i s t could j o i n while being assured of r e t a i n i n g his. separateness. Even today, Johns i s perhaps best known, with Rauschenberg,for i n i t i a t i n g the collapse and, as some writers are want to view i t , c a s t r a t i o n of t h i s narcissism - i n Painting with Two B a i l s , 1960 (plate XXX) Johns even suspends t h e i r g e n i t a l s between a parody of an Abstract Expressionist painting. How . these two managed t h i s , I think, l i e s i n t h e i r exceptional i n t u i t i o n . Both 6 were southerners, both had done time i n the forces, neither had had any a r t i s t i c background or l i v e d i n any a r t i s t i c environment. They approached painting with a naivete that allowed them to ask fundamental questions and answer them with a clear sightedness that perhaps no a r t i s t i n the thick of an Abstract Expressio- n i s t m i l i e u could ; as Marshall McLuhan, another influence on Johns, says: 'Professionalism i s environmental. Amateurism i s anti-environmental. Professionalism merges the i n d i v i d u a l into patterns of t o t a l environment. Amateurism seeks the development of the t o t a l awareness of the i n d i v i d u a l and the c r i t i c a l awareness of the ground rules of society. The amateur can a f f o r d to lose ... The 'expert' i s the man who stays put.'4 A marvellous manifestation of t h i s : Albers the p r o f e s s i o n a l , the expert on colour and Rauschenberg the amateur who f a i l e d to understand the s i g n i f i c a n c e of colour i n t e r a c t i o n theory at the Black Mountain School and ended up doing an a l l - w h i t e p a i n t i n g . ^ ' aJohns' i n t u i t i o n and 'amateurism' led i n 1954 to paint h i s f i r s t Flag (Plate 1) which set the pattern for the next f i v e years of an inquiry into the r e c o n c i l i n g of representation with the p i c t u r e plane as well as the whole nature of what constitutes the=art object - a play between representation and r e p l i c a t i o n . De Kooning had set the stage with hi s Woman paintings of the early f i f t i e s where he b a t t l e d with the s p a t i a l dilemma of f i g u r e and ground. The contours of the anatomy are opened to allow the environment to fuse with the object. He sought to escape from a Cubist r e a l i t y and return to a representational depiction, that would somehow not c o n f l i c t with the f l a t surface of the canvas. The tension was one of plus and minus, l i g h t s and darks, plane and contour, i l l u s i o n and f a c t . Johns' Fl a g i s remarkable i n that rather than f i n d a formal synthesis i n which we can attach one meaning.he s u c c e s s f u l l y suspends the issues without 7 t h e i r denying each other and i n s i s t s on keeping the s i t u a t i o n incapable of any f i n a l r e s o l u t i o n . Is i t a painting or a r e p l i c a of a f;lag? The 'a p r i o r i ' s t r u c t u r i n g of the f l a g image, representationally f l a t , i n abstract terms may aread three dimensionally with bands of red on a white background. A l l these factors are immersed as i t were i n a neutral p a i n t e r l i n e s s which seems to provide a uniformity of s p a t i a l i l l u s i o n u n t i l we r e a l i z e that t h i s i n turn i s subjected to the pattern of the f l a g . We end up mutely dumbfounded by the i m p o s s i b i l i t y of reaching any d e f i n i t e explanation and i t becomes an e x i s t e n t i a l experience. Greenberg can place Johns only i n some 'void' between abstraction and representation. He recognizes the various contradictions, but the nagging insolu b l e q u a l i t y f i n a l l y forces him to dismiss the whole thing as i n d i c a t i n g a 'certain narrowness'. 6 Johns refuses to provide any a r r i v a l . Unlike, Frank S t e l l a , for example, Johns has gone too f a r for Greenberg. 'The o r i g i n a l f l a t n e s s of the p i c t u r e surface, with a few o u t l i n e s s t e n c i l l e d on i t , i s shown as s u f f i c i n g to represent a l l that a p i c t u r e by Johns r e a l l y does represent. The covering of paint i t s e l f , with i t s de Kooningesque play of l i g h t s and darks i s shown as being completely superfluous to t h i s end.'7 In the same way,Stella has sought to c r i t i c i z e Johns' c u l t i v a t i o n of 'problems', e:.g. Jasper's Dilemma 1962-63. S t e l l a gives h i s energies to solving r i d d l e s , Johns to c r e a t i n g them. Without the 'superfluous' q u a l i t y of the p a i n t e r l y i n Johns' Flag i t would indeed take on the function of S t e l l a ' s work. The disagreement appears to be i n the case that for formalism i t i s anathema to emphasize the process of painting i n order to d i s s o c i a t e the image from the emblem. ̂ For the next three years Johns was to continue experimenting with the i r o n i e s inherent i n the Flag painting. In 1955 he produced his Target pieces. These make even more demands on the observer because of t h e i r c e n t r a l i t y . 8 Primarily the focus of Target with Plaster Casts and Target with Four Faces (Plates II and III) i s neut r a l i s e d by the deep blue of the outer c i r c l e and the b r i l l i a n c e of the red surround. We are unable to confidently determine background and foreground, but at t h i s stage Johns does not appear too sure of colour to leave i t at that and introduces various modulating elements to cancel out the focus of the image. In Target with Pl a s t e r Casts the canvas i s topped by a s e r i e s of boxes with l i d s containing p l a s t e r casts of various anatomical 9 fragments. Both Kozloff and Solomon see the prototype for t h i s work coming from a piece done e a r l i e r i n 1954 before the Flag, t i t l e d Construction with Toy Piano (Plate Iv) where numbered keys of the toy piano l i n e the top of a box. For Target with Four Faces Kozloff finds the source i n an U n t i t l e d piece from 1954 where a box construction containing collage elements and a p l a s t e r cast of a head i s not unlike Cornell's work (Plate V) The three dimensional elements of these two works de-emphasize the cen- t r a l i s i n g form i n such a way that i f we are to look at them with a marksman's eye we are put i n a quandary whether to aim at the centre of the target or the objects. A further subtlety i s that the spectator i s given the opportunity to shut o f f the sight of these casts by c l o s i n g the attached l i d s . Perhaps Johns i s i n f e r r i n g that these canvases do have l i t e r a l space - i n s i d e as i t were. However, since the reproductions do not show what i s on the backside of the l i d s t h i s should not be taken further. Steinberg's attempt to comprehend the c o l l e c t i o n of unrelated elements i s adventurous while s t i l l being v i a b l e : 'In Target with Four Faces .... the target of Jasper Johns i s always "right here" i t i s a l l the f i e l d there i s . It has l o s t i t s d e f i n i t e "thereness". I went on to wonder about the human face and came to the opposite conclusion. A face makes no sense unless i t i s "here"... as soon as you recognize a thing as a face, i t i s an object no longer but one pole i n a s i t u a t i o n of r e c i p r o c a l consciousness ... I f e l t that the l e v e l i n g of those categories which are the subjective markers of space implied a t o t a l l y non-human point of view. It was as i f the subjective consciousness, which alone can give meaning to the words "here and there", had ceased to e x i s t . 'H 9 The analysis i s warranted since at no time does Steinberg impose i t upon the artist's intentions. Johns, in striving to escape the onlooker's grasp by sett-*- ing up ambiguities of meaning, allows different interpretations but never a 12 conclusion. Narrative content is consciously played down to ensure this. In the above work the fourth cast has been swapped with the third to prevent any theme of progression in the woman's growing smile. 'Kozloff sums up the differences between various criticisms of Johns thus: 'The formalists, while perhaps admiring the ambition with which formal qualities were meshed together, judge the f i n a l effort to be an interesting failure. The latter two [Steinberg and Sylvester x3] i n i t i a l l y despairing of finding human and metaphorical expression of feeling in Johns, become aware of a philosophical play upon the identity and usage of images that transcends the merely personal'^ Eventually Johns becomes more relaxed with the target image and is able to use i t alone in paintings. Large Green Target 1955 (Plate VI) could possibly be regarded as less interesting in that the playing with colour and spatial i l l u s i o n is dropped, but on the other hand there is a new confidence with the materials. Through a richer use of encaustic and scrap paper Johns,builds up a texture that eradicates the spatial caused by the focalising image. White Target, 1957 (Place VII) is even more charged with dissociation. The grid- like pattern of the encaustic dipped pieces of collage are now subdued by a more expressionistic application with the brush. The result is an even tighter conjoining of structure and freedom to the point of almost imminent explosion. We could ask at this point why Johns did not simply paint a round canvas. I think there are two reasons. Shaped canvases at this time would have missed the point and impact that Johns was interested in, that is i t would have taken the subject away from the idea of easel painting. Also, whilst there is an element of spatial recession within the image the placing of i t on a f l a t ground heightens the irony. The number and alphabet ser i e s were o r i g i n a l l y used i n much the same way as the f l a g and target images - for example Figure 5, 1955 (Plate V I I I ) . It i s generally accepted that Johns took th i s motif from Charles Demuth's, I Saw The Figure Five i n Gold, 1928 (Plate IX) who i n turn took i n s p i r a t i o n from Carlos Williams' poem The Great Figure written a few years previously. 1"' Demuth's image i s f u t u r i s t and becomes a celebration. Johns' use has no r e l a t e d mea- ning. It does not quantify anything, i t attaches no anecdote, i t i s j u s t a common every day number as the f l a g was an everyday symbol. ' But there i s a d i f f e r e n c e . The d i g i t s , as w e l l as the alphabets^are much r i c h e r forms than the previous two. The Figure 5 i s far l e s s s t a t i c and possibly i t was t h i s q u a l i t y that led Johns to look at the question of narrative i n abstract a r t . He seems to have asked himself, how do we include a sense of time without denying the presentness of painting? '... The f i r s t number paintings were j u s t single f i g u r e s . . . . then I saw a chart. You know the gray alphabet painting? I saw a chart i n a book that had that arrangement of the alphabet. Then I, of course, r e a l i z e d I could do the numbers that way too. But e a r l i e r than that with the f i r s t numbers I didn't do every num ber and I didn't work on them i n any order and I d e l i b e r a t e l y didn't do them a l l , so that there wouldn't be implied that r e l a t i o n s h i p of moving through t h i n g s . ' 1 6 Johns then, growing t i r e d of seeking out f l a t image a f t e r f l a t image, saw a means of how he could b r i n g i n the element of time and l e t the same s i t u a t i o n deny i t through the use of the chart arrangement. With Gray Alphabets, 1956 (Plate X) or Gray Numbers, 1958 (Plate XI).no l i n e of d i g i t s or l e t t e r s i s the same whether read h o r i z o n t a l l y or v e r t i c a l l y since i n Gray Alphabets the chart gri d i s made up of twenty-seven rectangles by twenty-seven rectangles with the top l e f t rectangle l e f t blank and likewise Gray Numbers i s eleven rectangles high and eleven wide. At the same time that Johns i s c a r e f u l not to duplicate a l i n e with a s i m i l a r arrangement of images, there s t i l l remains from one aspect, a constant 11 pattern of progression which becomes boring to the extreme. However t h i s a lphabetical and numerical r i g i d i t y i s countered by the r i c h p a i n t e r l y treatment of each rectangle so that no l e t t e r or d i g i t looks the same (see Plate XII). On the one hand we are presented with monotony on the other with extreme v a r i e t y . In a statement to Hopps, Johns s a i d : 'I'm c e r t a i n l y not putting numbers to any use, numbers are used a l l the time, and What's being done i s making something to be looked at.'17 There i s another f a c t o r i n these two works that has- not occurred before with the important exception;, of one early U n t i t l e d piece done i n 1954 (Plate XIII). The e f f e c t of t h i s work - apart from the black and white reproduction looking very l i k e a Zoltan Kemeny r e l i e f - i s one of h a l f embedded, h a l f super- imposing l e t t e r s or d i g i t s . . The Gray Numerals.. and Gray Alphabets are treated i n a s i m i l a r fashion with the contours of the images being opened up so that there i s a f u s i o n of f i g u r e and ground i n progress rather than mutual e x i s - tence. But t h i s i s absurd and t r a d i t i o n a l l y unnecessary since number and ground share the same space. Such a phenomemon inadvertently brings everything back very c l o s e l y t o de Kooning and h i s opening of planes to allow the background entry, with the paradoxical inversion of now attacking surface as 18 i f i t were three dimensional. Despite a l l t h i s , looking e s p e c i a l l y at Gray Numerals, there i s a nagging 19 desire to f i n d some kind of meaning behind the permutations of f i g u r e s . This i s not so e n t i r e l y pointless as i t may sound even i f we may never a r r i v e at any s a t i s f a c t o r y answer. Kozloff's quote from Marshall McLuhan affords us an ins i g h t into t h i s persistency: 'In i s o l a t i o n , number i s as mysterious as w r i t i n g . Seen as an extension of our p h y s i c a l bodies, i t becomes quite i n t e l l i g i b l e . Just as w r i t i n g i s an extension and separation of our most neutral and objective sense, the sense of sight, number i s an extension and separation of our most intimate and i n t e r e s t i n g a c t i v i t y , our sense of touch.... i t may well be that i n our conscious inner l i v e s the i n t e r p l a y among our senses i s what constitutes the sense of touch. 12 Perhaps touch i s not j u s t skin contact with things, but the very l i f e of things i n the mind.'20 Johns loves painting. There i s i n h i s use of encaustic and o i l a deep pleasure i n the sensual a c t i v i t y of the a p p l i c a t i o n , which at the same time he never l e t s impose upon the work to any e g o t i s t i c a l and hence confining degree. ' by dressing and draping numbers, caressing i n a hundred ways these units, of.measurement, Johns' brush confers the homage of h i s own s e n s i b i l i t y upon the human mind. Not as symbols of c a l c u l a t i o n , but as'signs of i n t e r a c t i n g human f a c u l t i e s , the numbers are presented i n t h e i r deepest function.' 21 * ft * The paintings discussed so f a r , despite t h e i r o r i g i n a l i t y , do have the common theme of f l a t symbol. T h e i r indeterminacy prevents the spectator from coming to rest and the question we eventually ask ourselves i s why we are unable to accept a state of ambiguity or unspecified meaning. It i s a state that i s f a r more profound than the s u r r e a l i s t s ' . With Johns he wants to leave us free for experiences that w i l l come of ourselves and not from any p a r t i c u l a r 22 polemical m i l i e u . The possible exceptions are Magritte, and Breton's Nadja where there i s l e s s of that i n t e n t i o n that most of the other s u r r e a l i s t s 23 are anxious to remind us of. At the same time that Johns was doing the above, he was painting works . that contained objects that were themselves painted. 'I think i f there was any thinking at a l l , or i f I have any now i t would be that i f the painting i s an object, then the object can be a paint- ing... and I think that's what happened. That i f on t h i s area you can make something, then on t h i s area you can make something.' 2^ Tango 1955 (Plate XIV), although i t does not s t r i c t l y apply to the above account of Johns, could be seen as some sort of l i n k between the two groups. Johns introduces overlaying of d i f f e r e n t tones of blue i n the form of pieces of collage set down i n a g r i d - l i k e pattern with superimposed and diverse brush 13 strokes. In addition the bottom edge i s l e f t unworked,serving the same purpose as Pollock's untreated canvas that aids i n acknowledging the picture plane. In f a c t , Tango seems to be an e x p l i c i t commentary on Pollock's s t y l e . If Pollock can f l i n g himself around on a canvas and into i t s very mesh, why cannot Johns dance on i t ? Again we are given the use of the banal - the dance h a l l - for very non-banal ends. Steinberg c l a r i f i e s t h i s when he asks himself, what i s painting? 'It i s part of the f a s c i n a t i o n of Johns' work that many of hi s inventions are i n t e r p r e t a b l e as meditations on the nature of painting, pursued as i f i n a dialogue with a questioner of i d e a l innocence and congenital blindness. — " A p i c t u r e , you see, i s a piece of canvas n a i l e d to a s t r e t c h e r . " — " L i k e t h i s " says the blindman, holding i t up with i t s face to the w a l l . Then Johns makes.a picture of that kind of picture to see whether i t w i l l make a p i c t u r e . Or: "A p i c t u r e i s what a painter puts whatever he has i n t o . " "You mean l i k e a drawer?" "Not quite; remember i t ' s f l a t . " "Like the front of a drawer?" The thought takes form as a p i c t u r e - and don't l e t ' s ask whether t h i s i s what the a r t i s t had thought while he made i t . lEiis what the p i c t u r e gives you to think that counts. "I f p i c t u r e s are f l a t " , s aid the blindman, why do they always speak of things IN p i c t u r e s ? " "Why, what's wrong with i t ? " "Things ON p i c t u r e s , i t should be; l i k e things on trays or on w a l l s . " "That's right." "Well then, when something i s IN a p i c t u r e , where i s i t ? Behind the canvas, l i k e a concealed music box?" (Johns' Tango 1955) ' 2 ^ Tango looks forward.to Warhol's s i m i l a r parody of Abstract Expressionism i n Dance Diagram - Tango, 1962.(Plate XV) and further to Morris' 'gestalts'' that survey the phenomenon of i n t e g r a t i o n between art object and a r t i s t / 14 audience. Steinberg's dialogue encapsulesother works of t h i s nature: Canvas, 1956, Drawer, 1957 and Gray Rectangles, 1957. Canvas (Plate XVI) consists of a stretched canvas stuck face down onto the surface ofa larger canvas. The whole thing i s then covered with encaustic and collage, hence the piece i s one of abstract brush strokes on both the front and rear of a canvas. Johns seems to be saying that i f one accepts the space setup by painting on and i n the canvas, then i n actual fact a sculpture i s being made - what does a Pollock or a Morris Louis look l i k e from behind? This makes Duchamp's use of glass seem almost s u p e r f i c i a l . Nevertheless,at the same time Canvas i s a painting and i s hung as a painting - Johns, remember, would never say i t i s a sculpture. Both Drawer (Plate XVII) and Gray Rectangles (Plate XVIII) ask s i m i l a r questions. Gray Rectangles shows a gray encaustic surface that has been disrup- ted by three smaller canvases being inserted into cut out portions of the main canvas. I t f i t s to include t h i s piece into the group of object studies as here we have the i n t r u s i o n of three compartments. They appear to go one step beyond collage - whose surface has always been accepted as compatible to the p i c t u r e plane previously. Now, perhaps we have to ask ourselves more r i g o - rously; the rectangles are not stuck on they are stuck i n . This i s the f i r s t time the canvas and not i t s surface can be said to be made up of objects. Drawer takes t h i s idea even further. Now the object i s recognisable. Like collage i t i s rendered useless i n i t s conventional context by being aesthetised, but i t s t i l l remains i r o n i c a l l y i n i t s common context i n the sense of a f l a t surface with knobs on, f l u s h to the facade that retains i t . Like Steinberg, Kozloff t r e a t s i t as Johns looking at the p i c t u r e surface as 26 merely surface and hence any surface - be i t f u r n i t u r e or whatever - w i l l do. In Painting With a B a l l , 1958 (Plate XIX) the tension of objects within the canvas i s increased to where a b a l l i s l i t e r a l l y forced between the sections of canvas so that i t displaces the stretchers and leaves a gap through which the wa l l shows. The i n t r u s i o n here i s to the point where the i l l u s i o n of brush strokes versus f l a t surface reaches breaking point and 'atta- ched' objects attempt to take over once and f o r a l l . The tension i s extreme. We are allowed to see the quiet space beyond the pi c t u r e plane i f we concentrate to take our eyes o f f the surrounding canvas, but i t does not r e a l l y help. The area of expressive paintwork and i t s intruder s t i l l remains and we are only more conscious of the abusive way everything has been asked to change i t s nature. Canvas versus space with neither g i v i n g an inch. Tennyson, 1959, (Plate XX) which Steinberg regards as one of Johns' most b e a u t i f u l works, although he does not explain to us quite why, i s unlike Tango due to the t i t l e becoming more the subject of the painting - as i s the case of The 1957 (Plate XXI). It seems to be a l i t t l e d i f f e r e n t from anything previous and possibly a n t i c i p a t e s h i s i n t e r e s t i n language that begins with False Start, 1959. The word evokes our l i t e r a r y n o s t a l g i a but Johns portrays i t d i s s o c i a t e d from any reference except that of i t s present condition which i s apart from any intentions toward past or future. The painting i s made up of various tones of grey that,do not o b l i t e r a t e the presence or function of the word, they rather n e u t r a l i z e a l l the p a r t i c u l a r references, emotions, preconceptions we had over the name. Johns again requires that the audience look at a painting not i n terms of the anecdotal but to cause us to ask our- selves questions. The whole work consists of two upright panels on separate stretchers with a piece of canvas l a i d over the top of them leaving the top and bottom portions v i s i b l e . Kozloff mentions the right hand edge re- veal i n g a s c a r l e t under-painting - 'enough suggestion of a double l i f e to 27 disturb any viewer who thinks paintings should at le a s t be nominally v i s i b l e ' , We can also see the canvas folded underneath and ask ourselves what Johns has 16 been doing under there? •' The painter's world i s private and secretive no matter how much and what he shows us and Johns i n v i t e s the onlooker to share i n t h i s privacy by constructing h i s own secretive conclusions. Rosalind Krauss describes Shade, 1959 (Plate XXII) as: 'A painting whose f i e l d i s dominated by a pu l l e d down window b l i n d , becomes a reference to the t r a d i t i o n a l analogy between the p i c t u r e frame and a window frame opening up to a view of i l l u s i o n i s t i c space. Johns' shade closed against the p o s s i b i l i t i e s of three ..Idimensional space, i s i r o n i c a l l y covered over with a p a i n t e r l y evocation of the very space the work i s at pains to deny.'28 The work i s owned by Mrs. Leo Steinberg and Mr. Steinberg oddly enough takes delight i n comparing the shade on the canvas to the cost of shades i n depart- ment stores, discount houses and second-hand shops. He also states: s!On a shade of f l a t canvas drawn against the outside he shows outdoor darkness; l i k e the dark space known to closed eyes. How are eyelids lowered l i k e window-shades against outer l i g h t comparable to picture planes? A l b e r t i compared the open paintings he knew to windows.' Shade has an a f f i n i t y to Magritte's The Human Condition, 1955 (Plate XXIII). Magritte, l i k e Johns, has brought the ambiguity of two and three dimensional space to a point of f r u s t r a t i o n i n showing that surface i s as much a r e a l i t y as the space i t depicts. There i s also a l i t t l e known work by Delaunay e n t i t l e d Window on the C i t y , 1912 (Plate XXIV) Which compares i n t e r e s t i n g l y . A view of a church and some houses, has been painted on what could be taken for e i t h e r the front or the reverse of a canvas i n a picture frame. As with Shade i t questions the whole p r a c t i c e of attempting to recon- c i l e r e a l space with s p a t i a l i l l u s i o n , and i n both we are not so much shown a r e c o n c i l i a t i o n as an emphasising of the predicament. * * * With the painting of False Start i n 1959 (Plate XXV) we see beginnings of a new development. Not only does Johns give up his use of f l a t images, he also changes h i s medium from encaustic to o i l and applies i t i n a c o l l e c t i o n 17 of explosive brush strokes. Both Barbara Rose and Sidney T i l l i m have regarded t h i s l a t e r period as some sort of major c r i s i s ; Rose as one that was p r i m a r i l y a f r a n t i c r e s u l t of an exhaustion of the s e l e c t category of images which he sur- vived only through the introduction to lithography v i a Tatyana Grosman's Rhode 30 3 1 Island workshop i n 1960, a n d T i l l i m . as tantamount to the end of a career. In the l i g h t of previous work the t r a n s i t i o n i s indeed quite overwhelming, but rather than conveying a c r i s i s , the development makes much more sense i n the l i g h t of Johns' contact with Duchamp's work i n 1959 and the important i n i - t i a t i o n into Wittgenstein's thought i n 1961. This w i l l be dealt with at length i n Chapter 4 while at present I w i l l l i m i t myself to describing some of the major pieces that lead up to 1961. About False Start Johns says: 'It got rather monotonous making flags on a piece of canvas, and I wanted to add something... the early things to me were very strongly objects.... I thought then how to make an object which i s not so e a s i l y defined as an object, and how to add space and s t i l l keep i t an object p a i n t i n g . And then I think i n say, False Start and those paintings, the object i s put into even greater doubt and I think you question whether i t ' s an object or n o t . ' 3 2 False Start i s b a s i c a l l y a deeper, inqui r y i n t o n e u t r a l i t y . The mood of i t i s neutral despite the explosions of colour. Is there deep space or shallow space? Each explosion has. a moreorless uniform area. The l a b e l s are equally 'correct' and 'incorrect' to the colours they are assigned and even the colours of the l e t t e r i n g themselves are e i t h e r apropos or contradictory i n a balanced d i s t r i b u t i o n . The longer one looks at i t the more universal i t becomes. The l a b e l s are equally imposed upon as they themselves impose. There i s no hierarchy. It i s as i f we were being handed everything that constitutes the nature of colour and i f we look at i t a l l long enough something w i l l ' c l i c k ' and we w i l l have formed our own masterpiece. Kozloff r e f e r s to the s i t u a t i o n as a dilemma but i t constitutes more the timelessness of E l i o t ' s Four 33 Quartets. Another way of viewing t h i s i s an attempt on Johns' part to awaken us to the process of the v i s u a l and the i n t e l l e c t u a l - between what i s read and what i s seen. Purity of colour i s a f a l l a c y , simply an i n t e l l e c t u a l categorising of sensation for matters of convenience since there i s no such thing as pure 34 sensation. False Start may have been the work Greenberg was looking at when he r e f e r s to 'de Kooningesque play of l i g h t s and darks' i n that i t s brush strokes are f a r c l o s e r to him than the previous Gustoncome-mmpressionist-like g r i d s . Rosalind Krauss i n t e r e s t i n g l y suggests that the work: 'also heightens the sense of v i o l a t i o n of pure colour brought about by the paint handling of, for example, de Kooning....'35 It would be a mistake to see the s t e n c i l l e d l e t t e r i n g purely from a Cubist standpoint of emphasising the two dimensional. The l a b e l s i f anything, empha- s i s e s p a t i a l i l l u s i o n with t h e i r disappearing through and behind the painted surface. The s u r r e a l i s t would c i t e Magritte's The Use Of Words, 1928-1929. (Plate XXVI), as the prototype to t h i s work, but there i s a d i f f e r e n c e . Whilst Magritte's work i s a d i r e c t r e f u t a t i o n Johns leaves the question open. Calas sees i t that Magritte l i m i t s himself to a d i s s o c i a t i o n between image and l a b e l whereas Johns i s interested i n the 'continuous s h i f t i n g between 36 signs and images.' The t i t l e i t s e l f i s i r o n i c for a t r a n s i t i o n a l piece. Johns explained to Hopps: 'I didn't know what to c a l l i t and i t wasn't l i k e my other paintings and one day I was s i t t i n g i n the Cedar Row and looked up at a point of a horse race which was c a l l e d "The False S t a r t " and I said that was going to be the t i t l e of my painting'37 Jubilee (Plate XXVII) of the same year i s the sequel and ultimate r e s u l t of what Krauss suggests i s happening i n False Start. 'By means of the colour names and t h e i r s h i f t i n g r e l a t i o n s h i p to the pure colours they i d e n t i f y Johns points up the i r o n i c d i s s i p i c a t i o n of colour put to the service of modelling i l l u s i o n i s t i c space.'38 Colour d i s s i p a t e d , points to only one thing i t would seem: a l l colour i s useful for i t i s the e s t a b l i s h i n g of i l l u s i o n through darks and l i g h t s . This i s how de Kooning uses i t and a b e l i e f out of which Greenberg has v i r t u a l l y made a movement. Johns appears to be saying that i f t h i s i s the case then why not redo False Start using j u s t black and white and the tones i n between. However, he indicates t h i s notion to be even more short-sighted since our v i s i o n , being colour s e n s i t i v e , we even see black and white i n colour - witness the h i n t s of blues and reds. Out The Window, 1959 (Plate XXVIII) shows a s i m p l i f i c a t i o n of the idea of False Start by reducing the painting to three areas, RED, YELLOW and BLUE. It points up the absurdity of categorisation further by reducing the l a b e l s to the primary colours and i n addition the l e t t e r s , not being s t e n c i l l e d , allow Johns to f i l l them i n with a v a r i e t y of colours to the extent where not only t h e i r form becomes dispersed, but also t h e i r l a b e l l i n g implications. The i r o n i e s are enhanced by the story Solomon t e l l s when Johns' s i s t e r v i s i t e d the studio and u n i n t e n t i o n a l l y gave the canvas i t s name. Finding no meaning i n the 'emptiness' of the p i c t u r e , '.... she looked at 'the vacant parking l o t across the street and remarked that he seemed to paint what he saw out h i s window.'29 Thermometer, 1959 (Plate XXIX) could be a comment on the concept of equating colour to degrees of temperature. At f i r s t the thermometer appears to be c a l l i b r a t e d systematically with the temperature of the colours c o l l e c - t i v e l y measuring about 85 degrees. But degrees what? There i s c a l l i b r a t i o n but no s c a l e . Rosalind Krauss finds irony i n that the painting having been c a l l i b r a t e d , the action ends up i n the Ciermometer. Nevertheless, maybe the action i s within the area of the spectator. The p i c t u r e remains s t a t i c u n t i l the spectator comes along to set i t o f f . This would t i e i n n i c e l y with Steinberg's reference to e y e l i d s . The image w i l l only appear i f we allow i t 40 to become part of ourselves..'Transformation i s i n the head' says Johns. Painting With Two B a l l s , 1960 (Plate XXX) has a l l the implications the e a r l i e r one with a s i n g l e b a l l had. It could be regarded as a parody on Cubism with the attempt to render a three dimensional object within a p i c t o r i a l f i e l d - for Johns the stress i s enough to s p l i t the p i c t u r e apart. There i s also the g e n i t a l s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , seen as a comment on the indulgent 'machismo' in t e r e s t i n abstract e x p r e s s i o n i s t s . With the exception of i t s prototype, objects have so far played a . r e l a t i v e l y passive r o l e with paint being the only seducer. Now objects assert themselves and Johns' pictures become 41 'readable as p o l a r i t i e s of doing and s u f f e r i n g . ' Device C i r c l e , 1959 (Plate XXXI) shows a s i m i l a r play between 'action upon' and 'acted upon'. A length of wood n a i l e d to the centre of the canvas determines the radius of a c i r c l e . - perhaps a future target. One i s never quite sure what came f i r s t , the canvas covered with red, yellow, blue and white brush strokes and collage or the s t i c k device. The s t i c k has been covered with paint intimating i t has been acted upon and consequently came f i r s t , also the c i r c l e at times determines the placing of colour areas. On the other hand there are suggestions that the s t i c k and i t s drawing action was • subsequent i n i t s action' upon areas of paint that not only t o t a l l y , d i s - regard the confines of the c i r c l e but have been scratched by the n a i l at the end of the s t i c k . Painting with Ruler and "Gray", 1960 (Plate XXXII), which i s r e l a t e d to the above i n i t s use of a r o t a t i n g s t i c k , presents the j u x t a p o s i t i o n of free expression within the confines of a measured space. Harold Rosenberg states i n 'American Action Painter^?: 'At a c e r t a i n moment the canvas began to appear to one American painter a f t e r another as an arena i n which to act rather than as a space i n which to reproduce, redesign, analyse or "express" an object, actual or imagined. What was to go on the canvas was not a p i c t u r e but an event.'^ 2 On one l e v e l Johns i s f o r c i n g t h i s arena to be constrained by the measured confines of the thirty-two inch long r u l e r which rotates from a piece of wood that b i s e c t s the canvas. However, perhaps measurement: and freedom are not such contradictory issues as they f i r s t seem here. I do not think i t too f a r fetched, even i f round about, to approach t h i s painting from the aspect of Leonardo's drawing of the V i t r u v i a n Man (Plate XXXIII), where the e s s e n t i a l point i s that 'Man i s the measure of a l l things' and 'master of the square and 43 c i r c l e which he seems to have conjured up around him.' Not only does Painting With Ruler and "Gray" incorporate the c i r c l e and square but Johns has always had a great admiration for Leonardo's work and thought. Even i f a l l i s unacceptable, the f a c t remains that the moment Pollock steps on to h i s canvas h i s arena i s determined by h i s own scale and i n t h i s sense can be measured. Rosenberg, goes on to hint at something l i k e t h i s , a l b e i t unthinkingly: '...what gives the canvas i t s meaning i s not psychological data but ' r o l e ' . The way the a r t i s t organises h i s emotional and i n t e l l e c t u a l energy as i f he were i n a l i v i n g s i t u a t i o n . The i n t e r e s t l i e s on the kind of act taking place i n the four-sided arena - a dramatic interest.'^4 The c e n t r a l piece of wood has the word 'gray' l i g h t l y stamped on i t . Even more than Jubilee t h i s shows the absurdity of reading colour simply i n terms of l i g h t s and darks since i t would necessitate the l a b e l l i n g of the natural toned wood, 'gray'. The use of quotation marks around the word i n the t i t l e insinuates further the a r b i t r a r i n e s s of such a reduction of phenomena to a s i n g l e term. Device, 1961-62 (Plate XXXIV) questions, among other things, what i t s t i t l e i n f e r s , that the nature of the paint transformation depends not only on the hand but the choice of t o o l . F r i e d describes the scraped and squeegeed semicircles of paint as ' c l e a r l y meant as a mechanical i r o n i c paradigm of 45 de Kooning's dragging brush and smeared paint tecture.' This may w e l l be true, but the areas of paint are more than j u s t a paradigm of an e a r l i e r 22 a r t i s t ' s work. Ambiguities of time appear. The c i r c l e s of paint are almost F u t u r i s t but they could well have been scraped at a slower rate than the more s t a t i c - l o o k i n g brush strokes were applied. 'There are no objective 46 c o r r e l a t i o n s between gesture and e f f e c t . ' Nevertheless, the chief motive of the work i s one of anonymity. It shows once again a desire to cease to impose on the spectator a p a r t i c u l a r view by taking away the autobiographical from gesture. Johns sees i t that the a r t i s t should e x t r i c a t e himself from the work i n order that what i s on the canvas i s i t s e l f and not simply a reassurance of the a r t i s t ' s own i d e n t i t y . 'I have attempted to develop my thinking i n such a way that the work I've done i s not me - not to confuse any f e e l i n g s with what I produced. I didn't want my work to be an exposure of my f e e l i n g s . Abstract Expressionism was so l i v e l y - personal i d e n t i t y and p a i n t i n g were more or l e s s the same, and I t r i e d to operate i n the same way. But I found I couldn't do anything, that would be i d e n t i c a l with my f e e l i n g s . So I worked i n such a way that I could say that i t ' s not me. That accounts for the separation.'47 Before going on to discuss the subsequent work from 1961-1964 i n r e l a t i o n to Wittgenstein i t i s , of course, necessary to gain some f a m i l i a r i t y with the philosopher's thought. E s s e n t i a l l y i t can be broken up.into two books, the Tractatus Logico - Philosophicus and the P h i l o s o p h i c a l Investigations. The Investigations i s b a s i c a l l y a contradiction of the former and i s the work that i s relevant to Johns' painting. Not only i s t h i s confirmed by various reports such as Barbara Rose's who has disclosed that i t was h i s 'bed-time' reading 48 during the s i x t i e s , but I hope i t w i l l become more than evident i n the proceeding chapters. There i s no d e f i n i t e painting that marks a beginning of Johns' reading since i t caused a furthering of inquiry rather than any r a d i c a l break and f o r t h i s reason I w i l l commence with the paintings i n 1961 that show p a r t i c u l a r intimation of Wittgenstein's concepts. In addition to t h i s , I w i l l analyse the nature of what has been written on Wittgenstein as an influence on Johns to t h i s date. There has been much misconception as to what exactly Wittgenstein's role i s and I feel i t i s necessary to clear up these mistake; - which are primarily due to a misunderstanding of the philosopher - before go any further. CHAPTER TWO: WITTGENSTEIN'S PHILOSOPHY: A SYNOPSIS "Meaning implies that something i s happening; you can say meaning is determined by the use of the thing, the way an audience uses a painting once i t i s put in public." [Jasper Johns] x Ludwig Johann Wittgenstein was born i n Vienna i n 1889, the youngest of eight c h i l d r e n a l l generously endowed with i n t e l l e c t u a l and a r t i s t i c t a l e n t . His mother was devoted to music and t h e i r home became a centre of musical l i f e . Brahms was a frequent v i s i t o r and one of Wittgenstein's brothers, Paul, became a distinguished p i a n i s t . To begin with Wittgenstein studied engineering i n B e r l i n and then, from 1908, at the University of Manchester where he became p a r t i c u l a r l y interested i n aeroplane engines and p r o p e l l o r s . The mathematical aspect of t h i s work led Wittgenstein to develop an i n t e r e s t i n pure mathematics and eventually i t s ph i l o s o p h i c a l foundations. After reading Russell's P r i n c i p i a Mathematica and being greatly impressed by i t he decided to move to Cambridge where he spent the greater part of 1912-13 working with Russell - f i r s t as a p u p i l and l a t e r as a partner. During the War he served i n the Austrian Army as a volunteer and at the same time continued to work at h i s book, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, which he completed at around the same time he was captured i n I t a l y i n 1918. The manuscript was delivered to Russell v i a diplomatic courier. The notebooks used i n the preparation of the Tractatus were destroyed on Wittgenstein's request. Three of them covering the period 1914-16 a c c i d e n t a l l y survived and were published i n 1961. A f t e r the War, Wittgenstein decided to become a teacher and from 1920-26 he taught nine and ten year olds i n various Austrian v i l l a g e . s c h o o l s . During t h i s time he compiled and published a d i c t i o n a r y for students i n elementary schools. In 1926 he resigned as a school teacher and inquired at a monastery about the p o s s i b i l i t y of entering a contemplative way of l i f e . He was f i n a l l y discouraged by the father superior. For the next two or so years he l i v e d with h i s family i n Vienna and devoted the majority of h i s time designing and organising the b u i l d i n g of a mansion for his sister.' 1' It was during this period that he met and was visited by various members of the Vienna c i r c l e - most notably the logical-positivists, Moritz Schluck and Friederich Wausmann. The Tractatus supplied the background 3 to many of their discussions. In January, 1929 Wittgenstein returned to Cambridge to devote himself again to philosophy and for the next three or four years he gradually deve- loped, largely through self criticism, his new position in philosophy. The earlier version of these views are to be found in the Blue and Brown Books which date from 1933-35. The later version Philosophical Investigations con- tain his thoughts from the thirties u n t i l his death. The Investigations were posthumously published in 1953 together with a translation by G.E.M. Anscombe. In 1939 Wittgenstein became Professor of Philosophy at Cambridge in succession to George Moore. With the development of World War II, Wittgenstein found i t impossible to remain a spectator and in 1941 l e f t Cambridge to work as a porter at Guy's Hospital in London. He was transferred in 1943 to the Royal Infirmary in Newcastle where he worked as a 'lab' boy. In 1944 he resumed lectures at Cambridge but became increasingly dissatisfied with his role as a teacher. He f e l t a need to l i v e alone and devote his energies to finishing the Investigations. Consequently in 1947 he resigned his chair. For the next couple of years he lived in Ireland and spent a few months with Norman Malcolm in the States. In the summer of 1949 he learnt he had cancer. He visited his family in Vienna and in 1951 moved to the home of his physician in Cambridge. He died on April 29th, 1951. Wittgenstein was a very unusual man; as a lecturer he invariably wore an open neck shirt - unheard of for the time. His room in Trinity College, was furnished with l i t t l e more than a few deck-chairs. He seemed to want to lead a frugal, ascetic existence. When his father died in 1912, Wittgenstein inherited a large fortune and proceeded to donate a big sum of i t to be d i s t r i b u t e d among needy Austrin poets and w r i t e r s . Part of the reason for t h i s action was the fear of having friends for the sake of money, but to a great extent i t was due to the same search for a u s t e r i t y that led him to, not only consider monastic l i f e , but also b u i l d a hut near Skj-olden, Norway i n 1913 where he intended to l i v e a l i f e of seclusion. When he was serving on the eastern front during the F i r s t War, he came across a copy of Tolstoy's r e l i g i o u s w r i t i n g which apparently had a great a f f e c t on him. He was subject to f i t s of depression, often bordering on the s u i c i d a l and h i s close friends were subjected to unaccountable moody reactions. On the other hand, he had a naive charm. Malcolm t e l l s of him washing his host's dishes i n the bath and giving Malcolm's wife a d i s h mop i n reference to her 4 'unhygenic' c l o t h . He r e a l l y enjoyed reading American detective magazines, s i t t i n g i n the front row of the cinema during matinee performances and r o l l i n g pennies at fairgrounds. Human kindness and concern were for him far more important q u a l i t i e s i n a person than i n t e l l e c t u a l prowess or sophisticated taste. There was a profound sense of honesty that led him to enter into p h i l o s o p h i c a l problems passionately. He had a strong desire to clear problems up and be r i d of them. The Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus I w i l l deal with the Tractatus i n as short a manner as isnpossible since, i n t h i s paper, i t i s only necessary to be acquainted with i t to the point of understanding the r a d i c a l i s m of the l a t e r Investigations as w e l l as assessing the v a l i d i t y of writings on Johns and Wittgenstein i n Chapter 3. It i s the philosophy set down i n the Investigations that influenced Johns as w i l l be made c l e a r further on. In the Tractatus Wittgenstein puts forward the argument that language i s a picture of r e a l i t y . The world ( r e a l i t y ) consists e n t i r e l y of simple f a c t s or atomic f a c t s , none of which are i n any way dependent on one another. This does not mean that atomic facts cannot be analysed but only that they cannot be analysed into other atomic f a c t s : 'Each item (fact) can be the case or not the case while everything else remains the same.'5 What Wittgenstein i s t r y i n g to say then i s that r e a l i t y i s made of fact s that are e n t i t i e s , that i s they cannot be reduced to other f a c t s . Each fa c t has a l o g i c a l form - they are made up of things or objects whose i n d i v i d u a l form i s unatterable, atomic. 'In a manner of speaking, objects are co l o u r l e s s . ' ^ 'Either a thing has properties that nothing else has, i n which case we can immediately use a d e s c r i p t i o n to d i s t i n g u i s h i t from the others and re f e r to i t , or on the other hand, there are several things that have the whole set of t h e i r properties i n common i n which case i t i s quite impossible to indic a t e one of them.' 7 A f a c t (at other times termed 'state of a f f a i r s ' ) i s made up of objects that l i n k into one another i n a l o g i c a l pattern and Wittgenstein saw language as the p i c t u r i n g of these f a c t s . He reputedly got hold of t h i s idea i n 1914 from an a r t i c l e i n a magazine about a lawsuit i n Paris concerning an automobile accident. During the hearing, a model of the accident was produced. For Wittgenstein, the model served as a d e s c r i p t i o n of a possible state of a f f a i r s and i t occurred to him that he could reverse the analogy and say language, i n the form of serie s of atomic f a c t s , serves as a model or pi c t u r e of 8 r e a l i t y . It i s Important to r e a l i s e that Wittgenstein saw language as l i t e r a l l y a picture of r e a l i t y and not merely l i k e a p i c t u r e . Both language and r e a l i t y , he posed, share the same l o g i c a l form and that anything said outside t h i s one to one correspondence i s 'nonsensical'. By nonsensical he did not mean valueless but rather 'unreal',that i s with no d e f i n i t e meaning. The only way we can assign meaning to something said i s i f by comparing i t to what i t p i c t u r e s , through seeking a l o g i c a l correspondence, we can say that i t i s 29 either true or f a l s e . In other words, i f a statement i s not a p i c t u r e , i t depicts nothing d e f i n i t e hence says nothing d e f i n i t e and therefore cannot s t r i c t l y speaking be judged as a r e a l i t y . This i s what Wittgenstein means when he says: 'The whole sense of the book might be summed up i n the following words: what can be said at a l l can be said c l e a r l y , and what we cannot t a l k about we must pass over i n s i l e n c e . ' 9 The Tractatus i s a guide to the use of language i n philosophy i n pointing out the boundaries of discussion. Once these l i m i t s have.been recognized then the philosopher may proceed i n a l u c i d and l o g i c a l fashion. Matters, such as at-soul, beauty, God, etc., can only be talked about 'nonsensically' and hence are outside the world of r e a l i t y . In order to determine whether a p i c t u r e or proposition ( i . e . , a spoken fact) i s true or f a l s e we have to compare i t with r e a l i t y . This suggests that the t r u t h value of elementary propositions have to be ascertained e m p i r i c a l l y . But there are propositions whose truth value cannot be determined e m p i r i c a l l y . The sentence: "Either i t i s r a i n i n g or i t x i s not r a i n i n g " i s made up of two elementary propositions and the truth value of i t i s true regardless of what the weather i s doing. Such a proposition i s true by l o g i c a l necessity not empirical necessity since i t does not deal with -reality... Wittgenstein c a l l e d such an occurrence a tautology and a proposition whose tr u t h value i s f a l s e by l o g i c a l necessity - " I t i s r a i n i n g and i t i s not r a i n i n g " - a c o n t r a d i c t i o n . 'Tautologies and contradictions are not pictures of r e a l i t y . They do not represent any possible s i t u a t i o n s . For the former admit a l l possible s i t u a t i o n s and the l a t t e r none' 1^ Hence language can only be a p i c t u r e of r e a l i t y i f i t s l o g i c a l form i s that of r e a l i t y . Without expressing t h i s form nothing can be s a i d . Not only itccannot be s a i d , i t cannot be thought since thought i s also a l o g i c a l p i c t u r e of f a c t s . Wittgenstein means by a 'thought' not the psychological but, i n the l i n g u i s t i c sense, an unsaid proposition. When the T r a c t a t u s came out i t was e a g e r l y taken up by the L o g i c a l - P o s i t i v i s t s i n V i e n n a f o r what they saw as i t s a n t i - m e t a p h y s i c a l o u t l o o k . But W i t t g e n s t e i n ' s p o i n t i s not one of r e j e c t i n g the m e t a p h y s i c a l but r a t h e r r e j e c t i n g the p o s s i b i l i t y o f s t a t i n g t h e m e t a p h y s i c a l . Through t h i s r e j e c t i o n , W i t t g e n s t e i n becomes p a r a d o x i c a l l y m y s t i c a l i n t h a t he e s t a b l i s h e s a w o r l d beyond the l i m i t s o f language, a w o r l d t h a t must remain i n s i l e n c e . I t i s a r e a l m t h a t cannot be d i s c u s s e d w i t h i n p h i l o s o p h y s i n c e we cannot impose a method upon i t . 'The sense of t h e w o r l d must be o u t s i d e the w o r l d . In the w o r l d e v e r y t h i n g i s as i t i s , and e v e r y t h i n g happens as i t happens: i n i t no v a l u e e x i s t s - and i f i t d i d , i t would have no v a l u e . I f t h e r e i s any v a l u e t h a t does have v a l u e , i t must be o u t s i d e t h e whole sphere o f what happens and i s t h e c a s e . F o r a l l t h a t happens and i s t h e case i s a c c i d e n t a l . ' H In t h e f i n a l a n a l y s i s i t c o u l d be argued t h a t the T r a c t a t u s c o n t r a d i c t s i i t s e l f i n b e i n g a b l e t o d i s c u s s what i t a f f i r m s cannot be d i s c u s s e d . R u s s e l l i n h i s i n t r o d u c t i o n says f o r example: 'The whole s u b j e c t of e t h i c s .... i s p l a c e d by Mr. W i t t g e n s t e i n i n t h e m y s t i c a l i n e x p r e s s i b l e r e g i o n . N e v e r t h e l e s s he i s c a p a b l e o f e x p r e s s i n g h i s e t h i c a l o p i n i o n s . ' ^ W i t t g e n s t e i n i n the end seemed t o agree but sees i t as h a v i n g a purpose. . 'My p r o p o s i t i o n s s e r v e as e l u c i d a t i o n s i n the f o l l o w i n g way: anyone who u n d e r s t a n d s me e v e n t u a l l y r e c o g n i s e s them as n o n s e n s i c a l , when he has used them - as steps;:- to c l i m b up beyond them. (He must, so to speak, throw away the l a d d e r a f t e r he has c l i m b e d up i t . ) . ' 1 3 The P h i l o s o p h i c a l I n v e s t i g a t i o n s What p r e c i p i t a t e d t h e complete r e p u d i a t i o n of the T r a c t a t u s i s r e c o u n t e d by b o t h Malcolm and von W r i g h t . At one p o i n t W i t t g e n s t e i n was d e f e n d i n g h i s view o f the p r o p o s i t i o n and t h a t which i t d e s c r i b e s as h a v i n g the same l o g i c a l form w i t h a c o l l e a g u e o f h i s , the I t a l i a n e conomist, P i e r o S t r a f f a . S t r a f f a made a g e s t u r e used by N e a p o l i t a n s to e x p r e s s contempt or d i s g u s t and asked 14 W i t t g e n s t e i n ' w h a t t h e l o g i c a l form of t h a t was'. A c c o r d i n g to W i t t g e n s t e i n t h i s was the question that made him r e a l i s e the absurdity of h i s former p o s i t i o n . Wittgenstein opens the P h i l o s o p h i c a l Investigations with a discussion of St. Augustine's conception of the basis of language. In h i s Confessions he claimed he learnt to understand the speech of h i s elders by ostensive d e f i n i t i o n . - i . e . , by pointing to an object and at the same time naming i t , he believed the^'word's meaning would become c l e a r . But Wittgenstein points out that such a system consists only of learning names and what they r e f e r to. Such a conception only creates an o v e r - s i m p l i f i e d language or as he c a l l s i t , 'language game', 'It i s as i f someone were to say: "A game consists i n moving objects about on a surface according to c e r t a i n r u l e s . . . " - and we r e p l i e d : You seem to be thinking of board games, but there are others. You can make your d e f i n i t i o n correct by expressly r e s t r i c t i n g i t to those games.'x^ The idea of giving meaning to a word by pointing to the object i t represents does not f u l l y explain i t s meaning. It i s not the whole explanation, but merely one s p e c i f i c t r a i n i n g . 'With d i f f e r e n t t r a i n i n g the same ostensive teaching of these words would have effected a quite d i f f e r e n t understanding.' Wittgenstein f e e l s that St. Augustine's b e l i e f that a person learns to speak by simply memorizing names i s i l l o g i c a l since i t presupposes a c e r t a i n knowledge of language. If someone were to point to a red object and say, "This i s red", unless the 'student' understands what the word 'colour' means the statement w i l l be meaningless.'Red' may equally r e f e r to the s i z e , shape or material of the object. Therefore ostensive d e f i n i t i o n or naming of ob- j e c t s does not n e c e s s a r i l y give meaning. 'And now, I think, we can say: Augustine describes the learning of human language as i f the c h i l d came into a strange country and did not understand the language of the country; that i s , as i f i t already had a language only not t h i s one. Or again: as i f the c h i l d could already think, only not yet speak. And "think" would here mean something l i k e " t a l k to i t s e l f " . In other words ostensive definitions only work with people who already have some knowledge of the language. In order to point to things by : naming them we have to know f i r s t the nature of what i t i s we are pointing to, that is the meaning of the name. Wittgenstein believes the meaning of the word is found in discovering i t s use. If the use of the word is learned then i t s meaning is also. 'For a large class of cases - though not for a l l - -in which we employ the word "meaning" i t can be defined thus: the meaning of a word is i t s use in the language.'18 We could think of words as tools - things that we understand only in association with their function. A l l this i s a long way from Wittgenstein's previous views in the Tractatus. Picturing or naming the world is meaningless since there are many ways of seeing language. Wittgenstein asks: 'But how many kinds of sentences are there? Say assertion question and command? - There are countless kinds: countless different kinds of use of what we c a l l "symbols", "words", ."sentences". And this mutiplieity is not something fixed:, given once and for a l l ; but new types of language, new language games, as we may say, come into existence, and others become obsolete and forgotten.' There is no common basis for language; i t has no one distinctive property and likewise language games have no property in common. Wittgenstein compares language games with games in general. There is no simple property common to a l l games. Chess and ring-a-ring-o-roses have a very different make up to each other. However, there may be similarities between games, and in turn between language games - i.e., different usages - which Wittgenstein calls 'family resemblances'. 33 'I can think of no better expression to characterize these s i m i l a r i t i e s than "family resemblances"; for the various resemblances between members of a family: b u i l d , features, colour of eyes, g a i t , temperament, etc., etc., overlap and c r i s s - c r o s s i n the same way - And I s h a l l say: 'games' form a f a m i l y . ' 2 0 In the Tractatus each state of a f f a i r s was unique and from a l o g i c a l point of view there could only be one proposition for i t and the task of the phi l o s o - pher was to reveal the l o g i c a l structure of the proposition. In the Investigations, Wittgenstein not only r e j e c t s the notion that f a c t s have a l o g i c a l form but also that states of a f f a i r s consist of objects whose form i s unatterable, since whether an object i s composite or non-composite,depends upon, not an aboslute, but on the p a r t i c u l a r language game used. He asks us to imagine a chessboard and attempt to determine whether i t i s composite or not. If the idea of an 'absolute' non-composite object i s rejected then the notion of simple states of a f f a i r s has to be abandoned. Language i s no longer a pic t u r e of r e a l i t y but a t o o l with a r i c h v a r i e t y of uses - each a t t r i b u t i n g a d i f f e r e n t meaning to i t . There i s no one correct form, every sentence ' i s 21 i n order as i t i s . ' Now we discern a d i f f e r e n t r o l e for the philosopher. It i s not to ensure the correct form of the sentence but to understand i t , and the remainder of the Investigations could be summarised as attempting to do j u s t t h i s - to seek out the reasons for the misunderstanding of language. When one language game i s wrongly assumed to be analogous to another, p h i l o s o p h i c a l understanding i s needed to see the er r o r . The differences are hidden not because they are unfamiliar but because i n ordinary thinking they are too f a m i l i a r . In t h i s l i g h t philosophy i s not a science that points out something new but rather 22 something which points out .truisms. Wittgenstein believes that the philosopher's aim should be to e s t a b l i s h complete c l a r i t y which would not so much lead to a s o l u t i o n - something new - but a disappearance of the problem. He does not pose a correct model for understanding but simply reveals the b l i n d spots. 'What i s your aim i n philosophy? - To show the f l y the way out of the f l y - b o t t l e . ' 2 3 If we see how to get out of the muddle we can also see how we got there i n the f i r s t place. Wittgenstein conceives of philosophy as 'a .battle against 2 A the bewitchment of i n t e l l i g e n c e by means of language.' One of the p h i l o s o p h i c a l problems Wittgenstein discusses are those statements that speak of abstractions rather than bodily existences. Sta- tements about seeing are analysed, but I w i l l deal with t h i s area i n Chapter 4 i n s p e c i f i c r e l a t i o n to Johns' works. Another area are those statements to do with comprehension which are often misunderstood i n what they mean by mistaking how the s p e c i f i c words are used. For example, when we say, "Now I understand", we usually treat i t as a reportand the question a r i s e s : what does i t report? It i s not the occasion of understanding since i f i t were so i t would imply an observation of a mental act and we would have to ask our- selves whether 'understanding' i s a si n g l e mental act that can be observed. 'We are t r y i n g to get hold of the mental process of understanding which seems to be hidden behind those cases and therefore more r e a d i l y v i s i b l e accompaniments. But we do not succeed; or rather, i t does not get as f a r as a r e a l attempt. For even supposing I had found something that happened i n a l l those cases of under- standing - why should it_ be the understanding? And how can the process of understanding have been hidden, when I said "Now I understand" because I understood?! And i f I say i t i s hidden - then how do I know what I have to look for? I am i n a muddle.' 2^ There are d i f f e r e n t processes of understanding and i f the statement "Now I understand" i s treated as a report i t becomes meaningless as i t i s not a report of anything i n p a r t i c u l a r . Also we cannot say we understand u n t i l we have a c t u a l l y understood. To treat "Now I understand" as an observation i s absurb as making the report "Now I have begun". Rather the statement can only be meaningful as an exclamation, l i k e "Ah!" which i s a long way from report or description. Looked at in this way, such statements cannot be true of false even i f they can be j u s t i f i e d later. 'We could also imagine a case in which light was always seeming to dawn on someone - he exclaims. "Now I have i t ! " and then can never ju s t i f y himself in practice - It might seem to him as i f in the twinkling of an eye he forgot again the meaning of the picture that occurred to him.'2*' The exclamation may be unjustifiable but the joy or r e l i e f at having thought one saw the answer to a problem was certainly present. The statement was not a description of a mental state but more what Wittgenstein calls a "signal" which we judge whether i t was rightly employed by what the person goes on to A 2 7 do. Wittgenstein examines numerous philosophical problems from a l l different angles - statements of intention, action, pain, states of mind, seeing, recognition, etc.. K. T. Fann describes the Investigations as a book of case histories of philosophic cures. There is nothing in the book that we would 2 ordinarily c a l l a reasoning or argument - ' i t is more a book of rem inders.' In this sense, the work takes on the aspect of some sort of anthropolo- gical search where Wittgenstein,repudiating the idea of atomism, seeks the essential connection between th ings in the same way the anthropologist may look toward the sense of the totality through the study of anthropocentrism rather than ethnoeentrism. Both involve the understanding of humanity as a whole. 'What we are supplying are really remarks on the natural history of human beings; we are not contributing curiosities however, but observations which no one has doubted, but which have ^ escaped remark only because they are always before our eyes.' CHAPTER THREE:, JOHNS AND WITTGENSTEIN: THE STATE OF CRITICISM SO FAR "You have i n the past shown some impatience with c r i t i c s . Would you care to reveal your present f e e l i n g ? " A f t e r an e s p e c i a l l y long pause, he answered i n a very small voice, "I'm very t o l e r a n t , " and laughed.' 1 37 To date only three c r i t i c s have discussed the r e l a t i o n s h i p of Jasper Johns' work to Wittgenstein and one of these, Nicolas Calas, devotes only a couple of 2 sentences to the subject. Max Kozloff's comments are more lengthy but on the whole no more s a t i s f a c t o r y - i n f a c t maybe l e s s so. Although Rosalind Krauss' discussion i s l e s s erroneous than Ko z l o f f ' s she too presents a number of 'misunderstandings' that need to be cleared up. In Kozloff's discussion he i s g u i l t y of a s e r i e s of quite gross mistakes to the point that we have to throw out most of h i s a p p l i c a t i o n of Wittgenstein's w r i t i n g to Johns' work. It w i l l be easier to sort some of t h i s out by quoting the two most relevant passages i n f u l l . He says of the Tractatus '... i t (the World) comprises states of a f f a i r s , or f a c t s , regarding the complex r e l a t i o n s h i p of things. Our way of comprehending t h i s s i t u a t i o n i s by p i c t u r i n g (rather than simply naming) i t by language. And t h i s p i c t u r i n g i s orga- nized by combinations of words, as i n the structure of a sentence, which must i d e n t i c a l l y r e f l e c t the manner i n which . "states of a f f a i r s " i t s e l f i s ordered. "The fact that the e l e - ments of the p i c t u r e , " says Wittgenstein, "are r e l a t e d to one another i n a determinate way represents that things are r e l a t e d to one another i n the same way".' So f a r so good - but he goes on: 'Hypotheses about r e a l i t y , therefore, take the shape of models or language games, designed to show not what i s true, for what one holds to be true can be v e r i f i e d only e m p i r i c a l l y , but what i s p o s s i b l e . ' 3 What Kozloff has done i s make the serious mistake of b l i n d l y jumping from the stance taken i n the Tractatus to that of the Investigations. He shows that he has understood such passages i n the Tractatus as: 'A p i c t u r e represents a possible s i t u a t i o n i n l o g i c a l space. A p i c t u r e contains the p o s s i b i l i t y of the s i t u a t i o n that i t represents. A p i c t u r e agrees with r e a l i t y or f a i l s to agree; i t i s correct or incorrect true or false.'4 but i n the second paragraph says, ' r e a l i t y , therefore, takes the shape of language games.' This i s i n reference to the Investigations^which i s a d i r e c t r e f u t a l of the 38 Tractatus. So what we are presented with, then, i s Kozloff saying that e l e - ments of a p i c t u r e are r e l a t e d i n a l o g i c a l way since 'things' are r e l a t e d to one another i n a determinate fashion, and i n conclusion, that r e a l i t y i s given form by language games and hence meaning w i l l always be no more than a r b i t r a r y . The contradiction i s such that i t creates fundamental problems for Kozloff's subsequent analysis of Johns' work. Passing beyond t h i s , Kozloff discusses the question of tautology and c o n t r a d i c t i o n which he says - appearing to quote Wittgenstein - express a " f a l s e truth value". Nowhere does Wittgenstein use t h i s phrase and i n i t s context i t i s d i f f i c u l t to know what exactly Kozloff means. The only way I can explain i t i s that i t r e f e r s to statements that are not models of r e a l i t y - as indeed Tautologies and contradictions, from Wittgenstein's e a r l i e r view, are not. But then to use such a term i s to misconstrue what Wittgenstein says of these types of propositions. Wittgenstein explains that they both do have a truth value. The tautology's i s e s s e n t i a l l y true and the contra- d i c t i o n ' s e s s e n t i a l l y f a l s e . They are not p i c t u r e s of r e a l i t y since we can determine t h e i r t r u t h value from l o g i c a l necessity and do not require any empirical v e r i f i c a t i o n . Given t h i s misconception Kozloff goes on to explain that what Johns does i s present us with various p i c t o r i a l elements and'display them as i f they are s y n t a c t i c a l e n t i t i e s formed to i l l u s t r a t e some proposition, rather than c r y s t a l i z e them into products of fusion and f e e l i n g . ' ^ The audience presumably does the l i n k i n g up of these elements and we are forced to see the r e s u l t s as tautologious and contradictory: 'It i s only when they are s c r u t i n i z e d and v e r i f i e d to be r i p e with tautologies and contradictions that they come f u l l y a l i v e as the creations they are. In other words, t h e i r d i s t i n c t i o n i s to have addressed themselves to the f a c t that what has a " f a l s e t r u t h value" [ i . e . , that which i s not a modeal of r e a l i t y - I assume] i n l o g i c can have a profound aesthetic r e a l i t y i n a r t . ' ^ Supposing Johns.' work does contain tautology and contradiction, they are no more 'models of reality' merely because they are presented to us. Wittgenstein also presents us with such statements. It i s as i f Kozloff feels Wittgenstein has a problem over not being able to f i t such propositions into reality, that deep down he would like to somehow and Johns manages i t by being creative - art to the rescue! Kozloff has also failed to realise that in the Tractatus aesthetics i s outside the world of reality, the world of facts, and hence Johns' work i s no 'answer' since i t i s outside the Tractatus' conception of reality. Apart from these claims we should look at some of Johns' work to see i f they stand up to any of them. By the Sea, 1961 (Plate XXXV) is a useful one to take since i t i s also discussed by Rosalind Krauss in relation to Wittgenstein. In this work there are four colour labels: RED, YELLOW, BLUE, and a fourth in which a l l three words are superimposed to form, not a single word as Krauss claims, but a coalescing of the three into virtually an unreadable sign. Each word labels one of four sections of stretched canvas that go to make up the work. Although for the most part they have been painted separately, when joined together the entire surface i s covered by a more or less uniform painterliness. Kozloff i s asking us to look at these labels and treat them as either tautologious or contradictory or possibly even both. Hence we are to say the RED section is red and the RED section is not red>;the YELLOW section is yellow, the YELLOW section is not yellow and so on. However, there is no tautology since the red section is not wholly red and there is no contradiction since the section is not wholly not red. The work in fact has nothing to do with such propositions and even Kozloff himself asserts this.when discussing False Start: 40 1.... Johns would never confuse a symbol with a sign he i s neither i n t e r e s t e d nor uninterested i n preserving colour purity..... You do not ask whether that yellow patch i s red as the l a b e l says but i n the u n l i k e l y event that you do, the yellow i s affirmed and the red (of the l e t t e r i n g ) acknowledged, but the connection i s not i m p l i e d . ' 7 The ambiguity of By the Sea l i e s i n something f a r d i f f e r e n t that we w i l l look at l a t e r on. Kozloff proceeds to make a further error i n c a l l i n g tautologies and c o n t r a d i c t i o n s , "states of a f f a i r s " which from the Tractatus' point of view they d e f i n i t e l y are not. He then states that what i s at the centre of Johns' work i s the notion of usage and that, true enough, he picks t h i s up d i r e c t l y from reading the Investigations. But Kozloff i l l u s t r a t e s t h i s with a passage from the Investigations that has l i t t l e to do s p e c i f i c a l l y with the usage of words and more with the f a l l a c y of thinking a word s i g n i f i e s one thing. 'Imagine someone's saying" " A l l tools serve to modify something. Thus the hammer modifies the p o s i t i o n of the n a i l , the saw the shape of the board, and so on." - Arid what i s modified by the ruler, the glue pot, the n a i l s ? - "Our knowledge of a thing's length, the temperature of the glue, and the s o l i d i t y of the box." - Would anything be gained by t h i s a s s i m i l a t i o n of expressions?'^ To describe a t o o l as a'modifier' i s not s u f f i c i e n t to give i t meaning since what i t modifies i n turn may modify. Whilst dealing with meaning and usage Kozloff takes a b r i e f look at Passage, 1962 (Plate XXXVI) and Johns' treatment of Wittgenstein's concept. 'But when the a r t i s t l a b e l s an area "scrape" he shows that a r u l e r has effected the scraping, and that i t has smeared out part of the written d i r e c t i o n to do what i t has done! Not only i s he d i s p l a c i n g the proper function of tools,-but i n the end he also displaces "use" showing i t i n i t s true aesthetic guise of uselessness. ' 9 Johns i s indeed using the r u l e r as a scraper rather than a t o o l for measuring but Kozloff misses the whole point that both Johns and Wittgenstein make, namely that there is_ no 'proper function' of the word (the r u l e r has been labelled) or the object: r u l e r . A r u l e r i s only a measuring instrument when we use i t for measuring. To the boy who is caught throwing ink-pellets in clas i t means an entirely different thing. If we use i t to scrape paint then that is what i t s meaning i s . The paradox of the word 'scrape' in Passage that i t s e l f has been scraped is not a question of a word being rendered useless since we can s t i l l read i t , hence use i t . On the contrary Johns is very nicely reading i t from the van- tage point of two language games at the same time - one of report: "The paint has been scraped" and one of command': " i t says 'scrape' so I scraped i t ! Finally, Kozloff believes Johns differs from Wittgenstein in 'pointing out' that there are no rules common to a l l language games - but does not Wittgenstein do this? - and managing a 'redundant naming of objects.'"*"^ But to presume that naming of objects already present is a redundancy is again to miss the whole point. In Fool's House, 1962 (Plate XXXVII) Johns labels the broom, towel, stretcher and cup with a scribbled name and arrow pointing to the object not in order to indicate any absurdity of repetition but to reveal the ill-reasoned notion of names giving meaning. Johns i s , essentially concerned with what Wittgenstein asks us: 'Suppose, however, someone were to object: "It is not true that you must already be master of a language in order to understand an ostensive definition: a l l you need - of course!' - is to know or guess what the person giving the explanation is pointing to. That i s , whether for example to the shape of the object, or to i t s colour, or to i t s number, and so on" - And what does 'pointing to the shape', 'pointing to the colour' consist in? Point to a piece of paper. - And now point, to i t s shape - now to i t s colour - now to i t s number (that sounds queer!). - How did you do it? 'H What i s the word 'towel' pointing to? Something to dry our hands on? A paint rag, as i t has paint smeared on it? A piece of collage? I w i l l discuss this work further in the next chapter. * * * Rosalind Krauss' ar t i c l e i s more useful and she steers clear of anything said in the Tractatus altogether, concentrating solely on passages from the 42 Investigations. Her understanding i s much more sensible than Ko z l o f f ' s but she l i m i t s h e r s e l f to asking questions s p e c i f i c a l l y i n the l i g h t of Wittgenstein's idea of 'usage' and does not deal with the implications that h i s philosophy has i n the world of art as Johns does. The project i s s l i g h t l y marred by confusing various works and at times seeing what- i s not there. In Passage, 1962, the s t i c k device of Device i s replaced by a r u l e r and Krauss succumbs to the temptation of a s s i m i l a t i n g Johns' iconography to 12 Wittgenstein's imagery. This i s spurious work i n the f i r s t place, but even then the paragraph she a t t r i b u t e s the use of the r u l e r to bearSvery l i t t l e r e l a t i o n s h i p to the context i n which we f i n d i t used i n Passage. 'Suppose I were to ask: i s i t c l e a r to us, while we are u t t e r i n g , the sentences "This rod i s one yard long" and "Here i s one s o l d i e r " , that we mean d i f f e r e n t things by "one", that "one" has d i f f e r e n t meanings? - Not at a l l - .... Asked "Do you mean the same thing by both 'ones'? one^would perhaps answer: "Of course I mean the same thing; one!" (Perhaps r a i s i n g one f i n g e r ) . Now has "1" a d i f f e r e n t meaning when i t stands for a measure and when i t stands f o r a number? If the question,, i s framed i n t h i s way one w i l l answer i n the a f f i r m a t i v e . ' x 3 The reason for the mistake appears to be a v i s u a l one. Krauss believes that the r u l e r manages to e s t a b l i s h the whole scale of the p i c t u r e : 'The r u l e r seems to me to function not only as a scraping t o o l but also as a measuring device since the s i z e of the upper t h i r d of the canvas can be read o f f from the r u l e r ' s scale. This i s wishful thinking since i t does no such thing. Each t h i r d of the canvas i s 18" x 40", whereas the r u l e r i s j u s t under 14" long. It i s also unnecessary to force t h i s analysis since the d i f f e r e n t usages are already implied as pointed out previously. In addition to t h i s Krauss confuses the imagery of Passage with Out the Window, I I , 1962 (Plate XXXVIII) which makes reading d i f f i c u l t . 1 ^ Rosalind Krauss' view of By the Sea i s f a r closer to the truth than Koz l o f f ' s but even then she does not quite make i t . She sees Johns as 43 'demonstrating the i m p o s s i b i l i t y of separating out meaningful aspects of an object'"*"^ and finds a p a r a l l e l i n the Investigations. '...• i f I am shown various d i f f e r e n t leaves and t o l d " t h i s i s c a l l e d a ' l e a f , " I get an idea of the shape of a l e a f , and a p i c t u r e of i t i n my mind. - But what does the picture of a l e a f look l i k e when i t does not show us any p a r t i c u l a r shape, but 'what i s common to a l l shapes of l e a f ? Which shade i s the 'sample i n my mind' of the colour green - the sample of what i s common to a l l shades of green?... Ask y o u r s e l f : what shape must the sample of the colour green be? Should i t be rectangular? Or would i t then be the sample of a green rectangle? - So should i t be ' i r r e g u l a r ' i n shape? And what i s to prevent us then from regarding i t - that i s , from using i t - only as a sample of i r r e g u l a r i t y of shape?' 1? This i s p r e c i s e l y the point of By the Sea. The naming of colours plays a very small part i n d i s t i n g u i s h i n g them. -We have to take into consideration how we are using these names. A Peruvian blanket-maker may have only one or two conceptions of what 'red' i s whilst Greenberg would presumably only read i t i n terms of brightness. What Krauss omits are the implications of the lower panel where a l l three words have been superimposed but the o v e r a l l colouring remains the same. L i t e r a l l y Johns i s conveying the absurdity of naming to a stage where he says to t r y to describe a colour that has been made up of the primary pigments i s no more successful than a c t u a l l y p h y s i c a l l y mixing t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l names into one meaningless sign. It becomes i n the end a question of what we mean by a composite colour: 'We use the word "composite" (and therefore the word "simple") i n an enormous number of d i f f e r e n t and d i f f e r e n t l y r e l a t e d ways. (Is the colour of a square on a chessboard simple, or does i t consist of pure white and pure yellow? And i s white simple, or does i t consist of the colours of the rainbow?...). To the p h i l o s o p h i c a l question: "Is the v i s u a l image of t h i s tree composite, and what are i t s component pa r t s ? " The correct answer i s : "That depends on what you understand by "composite"." (And that i s of course not an answer but a r e j e c t i o n of the question)'.18 The only other work Krauss discusses s p e c i f i c a l l y i n respect to Wittgenstein i s F i e l d Painting, 1963-64 (Plate XXXIX) where she sees Johns a c t u a l l y 'using' colour i n a new way by making i t l i t e r a l l y three dimensional i n the form of wooden l e t t e r s of the words, Red, Yellow and Blue that stand out from the canvas. Johns indeed has shown that new uses give now meanings but he has not enabled us, as Krauss suggests, to point to colour any more meaningfully than before. The question s t i l l would remain, as Johns expressly wants i t to: exactly what are you pointing to? Beyond the various errors and omissions discussed, a common undertone that appears i n K o z l o f f ' s and to a l e s s e r extent i n Krauss' i s that Johns i s i n some way anxious to refute Wittgenstein - as i f somehow he were t r y i n g to present a s i t u a t i o n where we can i n a c t u a l i t y designate something s p e c i f i c or resolved i n painting. This i s not only to deny the nature of a l l the work we have looked at i n Chapter I but also to go against h i s own remarks i n the various interviews. In the next Chapter I hope to make t h i s much cle a r e r i n showing how Wittgenstein provided a methodology where Johns was not only able to remain even more subtly outside h i s work but among other things to o f f e r c o u n c i l to c r i t i c i s m i n general. CHAPTER FOUR: JOHNS AND WITTGENSTEIN 'Furthermore he disposes of the whole matter of influence by observing: "The problem with influences is that the thing or person you say i s an influence has to accept some of the blame for what you've done,"and laughing uproariously.'1 Through h i s contact with Duchamp i n 1959 and Wittgenstein i n 1961 Johns was e s s e n t i a l l y r e f i n i n g h i s inquiry into the meaning of a r t . With h i s previous work he probably saw a c e r t a i n s u p e r f i c i a l i t y i n simply showing f e a s i b l e s i t u a t i o n s where contraries could e x i s t side by side. As F r i e d suggests: 'An a r t i s t with Johns' c r i t i c a l powers could not but be aware sooner or l a t e r , that h i s putative so l u t i o n was no s o l u t i o n at a l l but rather a yoking of incompatibles. ... From being an attempt, to solve a formal problem inherent i n abstract expressionism Johns'"'art Becomes' an exploring, heightening and showing off of the problem i t s e l f . ' 2 F r i e d , c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y , would read i t i n terms of a Hegelian d i a l e c t i c , but i t seems more f r u i t f u l to bring i t closer to home and simply as c e r t a i n the nature of Johns' developing methodology from the two figures that were becoming prominent during these years. An analysis of Johns' growth v i a Duchamp would, of course be a paper i n i t s e l f and since t h i s i s fundamentally a look into the c l a r i f i c a t i o n of the 'problem' given by Wittgenstein, I w i l l be b r i e f . After Johns' f i r s t one- man show, held at the C a s t e l l i Gallery (January 20th — February 8th, 1958),. 3 he was spoken of frequently as a neo-Dadaist. Having l i t t l e idea what t h i s meant he read Motherwells' anthology, Dada Painters and Poets. In 1959 Robert Lebel came out with h i s monograph on Duchamp. This, together with a v i s i t to the Arensberg C o l l e c t i o n i n Philadelphia i n the same year, deeply aff e c t e d Johns. Shortly a f t e r , N i c o l a s Calas brought Duchamp to Johns' studio. Johns began to c o l l e c t h i s works and wrote a short review of a new t r a n s l a t i o n 4 of Duchamp's notes from the Green Box. Such devotion was unprecedented and goes to show the strong a f f i n i t y he f e l t for the older man. Iconographically we could l i n k much of Johns' subsequent work with Duchamp's - the use of r u l e r s with Trois Stoppage Etalon, 1913-14, Johns' Thermometer with the one i n Why not Sneeze, 1921. The colour charts of According to What with the same i n Turn', 1918. The scraped Device c i r c l e s with the r o t o - r e l i e f s and so on. In h i s review i n Scrap, Johns showed p a r t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t i n the famous passage from the notes to the Large Glass. 'To loose the p o s s i b i l i t y of recognizing 2 s i m i l a r objects \ 2 colours, 2 laces 2 hats, 2 forms whatever to reach the i m p o s s i b i l i t y of s u f f i c i e n t v i s u a l memory to toatransfer from one l i k e object to another the memory imprint Same p o s s i b i l i t y with sounds, with b r a i n f a c t s . ' For Duchamp the exercise of t r a n s f e r a l i s p r i m a r i l y an i n t e l l e c t u a l one whereas Johns' would-(like to see i t take place perceptually: 'My idea has always been that i n painting the way ideas are conveyed i s through the way i t looks and I see no way to avoid that and I don't think Duchamp can either.'6 This does not ne c e s s a r i l y represent a clash of i n t e r e s t s since the aims are the same. But Duchamp i s interested i n the conceptual 7 whilst Johns i s s p e c i f i c a l l y intent i n pointing out the f a l l a c y of generalisation, not from any cosmological aspect - although, of course, i t i s related - but within the v i s u a l p r a c t i c e i t s e l f . Johns i s a painter and consequently finds enough to think about i n terms of the painting alone. Duchamp encouraged him to depolarise the s i t u a t i o n and showed a way out of the notion of the g problematic - 'there i s no so l u t i o n since there i s no problem'. Johns saw Duchamp as moving h i s work from one of r e t i n a l boundaries 9 'into a f i e l d where language, thought and v i s i o n acted upon one another.' We have seen the beginnings of t h i s i n t e r e s t i n False Start and Painting With Ruler and "Gray". Wittgenstein provided a method of dealing with t h i s i n a way that the a c t i v i t y would remain without the problematic - i t was a method that c l a r i f i e d the d e f i n i t i o n of looking. Wittgenstein's l a t e r stance i s not unlike Duchamp's. His conception of the p h i l o s o p h i c a l problem was a need to elucidate i t - a procedure that led not to any s o l u t i o n but to i t s disappearance. A passage from the Investigations could well serve as Johns' dictum: 'We do not advance any kind of theory. There must not be anything hypothetical i n our considerations. We must do' away with a l l explanation, and d e s c r i p t i o n alone must take i t s place. And t h i s d e s c r i p t i o n gets i t s l i g h t , that i s to say, i t s purpose, from p h i l o s o p h i c a l problems. These are of course not empirical problems. They are solved, rather, by looking into the workings.... The problems are solved not by giving new informa- t i o n , but by arranging what we have always known. Philosophy i s a b a t t l e against the bewitchement of our i n t e l l i g e n c e by means of language.'10 As with Wittgenstein, Johns does not advance a theory, there i s no explanation, but rather he looks into the actual workings of painting and the perceiving of i t . Unlike, i n f a c t d i r e c t l y opposed to, the formalist i n t e r e s t , he does not regard the problems of contemporary painting as empirical but as a blindness to the inherent and unavoidable v i s u a l aspects.. Johns attempts to dissolve the problems by 'arranging what we have always known' and i t could be said that he sees h i s r o l e as a r t i s t , as a b a t t l e against the bewitchment of our sight - as well as i n t e l l i g e n c e - by not j u s t language, but more s p e c i f i c a l l y c r i t i c i s m . In 1961, Johns made the sculpmetal piece, The C r i t i c Sees (Plate XXXX). It c o n s i s t s of a small b r i c k of p l a s t e r coated with sculpmetal, (3-1/4 x 6-1/4 x 2"). The front of t h i s shows a p a i r of spectacles behind whose glass each eye has been replaced by a mouth, one open, the other not so much closed as the teeth barred. It i s an important work since to misunderstand i t i s to confuse the a r t i s t ' s stance in further works. Johns r e l a t e s that t h i s p a r t i c u l a r piece was i n s p i r e d by a three minute v i s i t of a c r i t i c to one of h i s e x h i b i t i o n s . 1 1 If i t has not done already the i n t e n t i o n becomes clear from t h i s information. The c r i t i c i s not as interested i n looking at art as he i s talking about i t . This does not assume that the c r i t i c does not look at a l l , only that looking is a means to another end. From a Wittgenst'inian outlook the message becomes doubly clear. In the Investigations Wittgenstein discusses the sensation of seeing and the describing of that sensation. When we look at something, we are not simply involved in the act of the sensory but also in an interpretation of that something. When we look we experience different aspects of a figure which in fact are different interpretations of i t . Our judgement of that figure w i l l only be one of many that could be made. Conse- quently there is no authoritative view of the thing seen. Perhaps this i s obvious, but Wittgenstein feels i t necessary to warn us of the danger in forgetting i t . As with the mistake of attaching meaning to a word by i t s naming function so we must remember that aspects of a painting can be descri- bed but not explained and ultimately the only authority is the painting i t s e l f . This is what Johns is saying. The practice of criticism is meaningful only to the extent of suggestion. We are a l l involved in i t - even though I think the work points directly at the professional - and must beware. To argue over interpretation where i t becomes a question almost of dogma comes perilously close to losing one' s sense of sight. 'Here i t occurs to me in conversation on aesthetic matters we use the words: "You have to see i t like this, this i s how i t i s , how i t is meant"; "When you see i t like this, you see where i t goes wrong";"You have to hear this bar as an introduction"; ^ "You must hear i t in this key"; "You must phrase i t like this".' New York criticism in particular has become so out of control as to almost impose rules of perception not only on to the audience but the artist 13 himself - e.g., some of the colour-field painters. The status of the c r i t i c is nigh similar to a film star and consequently there is an attractive position to be held, a reputation that must be carefully nurtured. In the Sketchbook Notes Johns says that 'looking is and is not eating and being eaten' which indeed i s the case of the mouths in The C r i t i c Sees. Not only is this a reference to the more mundane financial aspect of the critic^'s activity but also to the whole process of chewing over and regurgitating the artwork. Nicolas Calas, one of the few American art writers to watch out for the dangers of criticism, notes: 'When c r i t i c s treat pictures as texts rather than images, the public is expected to see art in terms of problems and solutions. Marcel Duchamp was fond of comparing c r i t i c s to parasites feeding on ar t i s t s ; today many formalist artists could seem to aspire to be fed on. 'x-> In such a state where material as well as psychological survival plays a large role, such work as Johns' that refuses to be pinned down poses i t s e l f even more as a threat and hence more ingenuity must be brought to bear to bring i t under control. This would explain the reluctance of a writer lik e Kozloff to accept The C r i t i c Sees for what i t is and to interpret i t in a way that i s compatible to his own ends. 'It i s perhaps not as worth belabouring the obvious inference that a c r i t i c sees with his mouth as i t i s interesting to note that the piece i s figuratively endowed with a sensory capacity of i t s own ... Taken in i t s e l f the object would imply, not that sight is more important than speaking, but that they are Peers , brought together in an unnatural situation... the probability remains that they are necessarily mutual reinforcements, components of an integrated function.'l^ So for Kozloff, Johns i s celebrating the glorious practice of the c r i t i c who brings about the interaction of sight and voice - 'the prime motive of any work is the wish to give rise to discussion'! Not only i s this ridiculously biased, i t i s an actual example of the c r i t i c seeing. He has avoided the implications of the aggressive mouths, the absence of any perceptual organ - we see mouths not eyes, spectacles infer poor vision not clear sightedness - purely in order to safeguard his position that the f i r s t reason for painting is not simply to look at i t , but so somebody can talk about i t ! 51 Johns i s attacking the c r i t i c whose motives are very different from learning to see. Wittgenstein sees the role of the philosopher as some sort of doctor who cur.es diseases of misunderstanding and likewise Johns takes i t upon himself to clear up bad habits about looking. He does this not by advancing any kind of theory on the meaning of art but by conveying to us that irony in the discussion of art i s unavoidable. For every interpretation of a collection of pi c t o r i a l elements another w i l l follow and application of language to the art object must take this in consideration. 'Well suppose that a picture does come before your mind when you hear the word "cube", say the drawing of a cube. In what sense can this picture f i t or f a i l to f i t a use of the word "cube"? - Perhaps you say: "It's quite simple - i f that picture occurs to me and I paint to a triangular form for instance, and say i t ' s a cube then this use of the word doesn't f i t the picture." - But doesn't i t f i t ? I have purposely so chosen the example that i t is quite easy to imagine a method of projection according to which the picture does f i t after a l l . The picture of the cube did indeed suggest a certain use to us, but i t was possible for me to use i t d i f f e r e n t l y . ' x 7 The effect of Wittgenstein's argument i s that i t calls attention to the fact that there are other processes, apart from the one we originally think of, to applying apicture to the word "cube". The connection between, word and image is tenuous. 'What is essential i s to see that the same thing can come before our minds when we hear the word and the application s t i l l be different. Has i t the same meaning both times? I think we shall say not.' Johns must have been a l i t t l e bewildered to begin with over the varied and conflicting interpretations his work received in the late f i f t i e s - not to mention the different schools they gave rise to. Contact with Wittgenstein's work probably came as a welcome r e l i e f . In another sense, however, because of i t s effect in providing Johns with a far subtler vision and methodology of eluding dogmatic interpretations, he has brought most of the North American 'heavies' to have a go in an effort to put him in some comprehensible slot. The situation of course is not new, but what is different is that Johns is the f i r s t to construct an oeuvre that leaves himself out enti- rely in the same way Wittgenstein deals with what we have rather than giving us yet another hypothesis. Because of this,his work is considered impenetrable and thus d i f f i c u l t and a common result i s that literature on his work is also d i f f i c u l t . Max KOzloff, with the intent of producing the definitive work, produces:aumonograph that at times of uncertainty almost hides behind mysti- 19 fication. In a world of criticism where interpretation i s hierarchial such measures are understandable, even i f unforgivable, whereas Johns' work addres- ses i t s e l f to nobody and everybody. Johns is paralleling Wittgenstein's anthropocentrism where the meaning of the painting is only relevant to the specific context i t is being viewed in and nothing else. What the c r i t i c s , and consequently ourselves, have done is to perceive through bringing certain concepts to a particular situa- tion. The result has been that the painting's success is dependant on whether i t affirms these preconceptions or not. 'What is meant is that we often see and come to know things only in terms of habit, of conditioned response of mental set, of necessary and predictable cues. We tend to obliterate those facts which contradict that which we already know and anticipate. '20 Johns began a compaign as i t were to remedy this mistake and i f under- stood in terms of Wittgenstein's philosophy his works became much easier to l i v e with. Presumably the d i f f i c u l t y the professional c r i t i c would have li e s iii the requirement that he take a radical relook at what he is doing 21 and ultimately a total requestioning of his motives for writing. Before I go on to look at some of Johns' painting in a Wittgenstiirian context, an interesting thought occurs at this stage. We have been talking about the dangers of generalisation when trying to find meaning in art. However, at the same time, both Wittgesntein's and Johns' anthropocentrism inversely has a levelling effect. Pears ;i on the Investigations states: 'It does not assimilate one kind of discourse to another: on the contrary, i t is always the differences betwen them that are emphasized ... But i t does bring a l l the great philosophical questions which arise within them back to the same level, ordinary human l i f e , from which philosophy started. Philosophy is the voyage out, and the voyage back, both of which are necessary i f the logical space of our ordinary linguistic practices i s to be understood.' 2 2 This is precisely what Johns' later work emphasises. We are presented with the impossibility of setting any of our perceptions within a specific frame- work of reference and this in the end paradoxically leads us to the generali- sation that a l l our perceptions, the c r i t i c ' s , the artist's can f i n a l l y be reduced only to human l i f e from which art started. 'He is engaged with the endlessly changing ancient task: the imitation of nature in her manner of operation.... he does so without structure, he sometimes introduces signs of humanity to intimate that we, not birds for instance, are part of the dialogue.' 2 3 The painting No, 1961 (Plate XXXXI) reveals a painted surface where the cut out letters of the word 'NO' hang from a wire casting both a real and a painted shadow. The work as i t s t i t l e implies deals with things and their opposites - the wire-looking shape in the upper l e f t is the outline of an imprint Johns made with the base of a cast of Duchamp ,'s Female Fig Leaf - which 24 in turn is an imprint. The letters on the wire serve as a pointing device. Johns wills us to select an area of the painting - or even the whole painting i t s e l f - define i t and then attempt to verify the definition by swinging the word on the end of the wire over to that area. We are continuously denied. Informed, we proceed to affirm that our f i r s t definition i s not the right one for that area and find ourselves doubly denied. Whatever portion we select and interpret not only i s i t negated but the negation is denied. The irony here i s that there i s no persuasion on anybody's part towards a definite conclusion. Nor i s i t a stance of neutrality since each time the word 'NO' 54 refutes, i t affirms the existence of something new. 'He said that even the negative condition imposes the "... expression of new sense which can help one into what one has not known".'25 Again t h i s work i s i n q u i r i n g into the l i m i t a t i o n of d e s c r i p t i o n and the f a l l a c y of looking with a mind to capturing. Wittgenstein agrees that there i s no such thing as pure sensation, that each time we look at something our thought process and i t s p a r t i c u l a r conditioning by experience produces involuntary judgements. Wittgenstein nor Johns deny the v a l i d i t y of these but never must they be thought of as conclusive. In a passage that i s s u p r i s i n g l y applicable to NO, Wittgenstein says: 'Suppose we s a i d , that we cannot describe i n words the expression of God i n Michelangelo's 'Adam'. But t h i s i s only a matter of technique, because i f we drew a lattice-work over h i s face numbered, ; * * ? ? f ? * ? . | : — x = 3 . ; <+ — — • £ : 6 : ' 7 .. ft <)l 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 I would j u s t write down numbers and you might say: "My God! It i s grand." It wouldn't be any d e s c r i p t i o n . You wouldn't say such a thing at a l l . It would only be a d e s c r i p t i o n i f you could paint (act?) according to t h i s p i c t u r e , which of course i s conceivable. But t h i s would show that you can't at a l l transmit the impression by words, but you'd have again to paint.'26 In order to reach a s a t i s f a c t o r y d e s c r i p t i o n of the face of Michelangelo's God, Wittgenstein suggests trying.; a system whereby a se r i e s of gri d references may ... create the necessary impression. That i s by a c o l l e c t i o n of pin-pointed references we may conjure up the image i t s e l f . The absurdity of t h i s notion i s obvious. Likewise, Johns i n v i t e s us to describe the canvas by s e l e c t i n g as many points on i t as we l i k e i n the. hope of creating the image i t s e l f . A f t e r continual negation and double negation we w i l l be forced to r e a l i s e that d e s c r i p t i o n does not capture,.and that, as Wittgenstein says, f i n a l l y the only s a t i s f a c t o r y answer i s the painting i t s e l f . Fools House, 1962 could be described, among other things, as the next step i n l i n e from Courbet's L ' A t e l i e r , 1855 and Rauschenberg's White Painting, 1952. As Rauschenberg's white paintings were 'airports for the l i g h t s , shadows and 27 p a r t i c l e s ' so Johns' canvas becomes a landing s t r i p f o r objects from his studio. On i t he has f i x e d a number of a r t i c l e s and placed them not i n a haphazard way but as i f concerned i n t h e i r compositional f a c t o r s . They are not d e t r i t u s i n the Rauschenberg sense but important elements of the art process - even to the cup of teal The fundamental irony l i e s i n the naming of the objects. The broom i s l a b e l l e d "broom", but i t i s also a paint brush. The stretcher by inference of the common connotation of the broom could also be taken as the f l o o r . They are also compositional elements, colour, texture. Kozloff even goes as f a r as to suggest that the d i v i d i n g of the canvas down the middle by the broom handle i s 28 a precursor of the s i m i l a r d i v i s i o n i n F i e l d Painting. An i n t e n s i f i c a t i o n of 56 the naming irony was provided by™the occurence of a friend who seeing the picture 29 for the f i r s t time exclaimed, "Any fool knows i t ' s a broom." Johns has given an il l u s t r a t i o n of Wittgenstein's maxim, 'the meaning of language is in i t s usage' and similarly the meaning of art i s in i t s usage. Such a belief of Johns' is what Cage meant in his 'Statements re Duchamp'. 'Duchamp showed the usefulness of addition (mustache). Rauschenberg showed the function of subtraction (de Kooning). Well we look forward to multiplication and division. It is safe to assume that someone w i l l learn trigonometry. Johns.'^0 Johns does not simply add or subtract to give extra or changed meaning. He shows the whole in a way that can be understood from numerous angles. As with Wittgenstein's philosophy in which he sees a duty not to impose a uniform grid on the space of language, Johns, by naming various objects that we rapidly begin to attribute different uses to, invites us to look at things from different con-- texts and not merely from a single preconceived one. To treat the proposition, "This is a broom" as an atomic fact denies the other associations we cannot help making. It is this complexity of meanings that Johns is anxious that we recognise. Pears on Wittgenstein describes this as an interst in holism - a procedure that creates an enormously involved task i f i t is to be f u l f i l l e d . The object must be approached again and again in order to recall a l l i t s aspects that make up the whole meaning. From a mathematical point of view the activity is trigonometrical in that two aspects of a work would constitute one triangle and so on. The idea of usage that occurs in Passage has already been discussed in the previous chapter. In addition,a piece of collage that is labelled "envelope" not only indicates the meaningless of naming but is also a pun on what language and art constitute, - a l i t e r a l enveloping of several meanings. A piece of wire and chain joined together by a fork when used in the painting plays the role of line, a barrier to the action of the ruler, another reference to eating and, of course, a piece of chain and wire joined together by a fork. 57 Andrew Forge speaks of Johns' work i n almost Wittgenstinian terms: 'Johns' motive i s not to astonish or entertain but to open our eyes to the widest p o s s i b i l i t i e s of painting as a language and to introduce to i t a new concept of a c c u r a c y . ' 3 i This concept of accuracy i s envisioning that realnwhere a l l things meet, where a l l implications and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s can e x i s t together. Johns says: 'Beware of the body and mind. Avoid a polar s i t u a t i o n . Think of the edge of the c i t y and the t r a f f i c there'32 Look to that point where extremes meet, the country and the c i t y and i n By the Sea where land and sea meet - the t i d a l s t r e t c h where nothing d e f i n i t e can be said but a l l i s present. Wittgenstein talks about t h i s domain i n almost humorous tones. 'Certain drawings are always seen as f l a t f i g u r e s , and others sometimes, or always three dimensionally. Here one would now l i k e to say: the v i s u a l impression of what i s seen three dimensionally i s three dimensional; with the schematic cube, for instance. (For the d e s c r i p t i o n of the impression i s the d e s c r i p t i o n of a cube). And then i t seems queer that with some drawings our impression should be a f l a t thing and with some a three dimensional thing. One asks oneself "Where i s t h i s going to end"?' 3 3 Periscope (Hart Crane), 1963 (Plate XXXXII) and Land's End, 1963 (Plate XXXXIII) take t h e i r cue i n i t i a l l y from the 'Cape Hatteras' section of Hart Crane's poem The Bridge. It would be a study i n i t s e l f to consider Johns' work i n 34 r e l a t i o n to Hart Crane's as well as Frank O'Hara's poetry. S u f f i c e i t to say that at the beginning of 'Cape Hatteras' Crane has reached a v i s i o n of the abso- lut e on returning to h i s native land, but i t i s never more than momentary and even as he enjoys i t he foresees i t s disappearance: , ... while time cl e a r s Our lenses, l i f t s a focus, resurrects A periscope to glimpse what joys or pain Our eyes can share or answer - then d e f l e c t s Us shunting to a l a b y r i n t h submersed Where each sees only h i s dim past reversed ....'3-* 58 The periscope symbolises our everyday v i s i o n that views the world from a l l i t s sides but never completely, h o l i s t i c a l l y as our s p i r i t u a l sense can and Johns advises that we regard our v i s u a l perception of things i n t h i s l i g h t . When we look, we view the whole even though we are only aware of one aspect of i t at a time. On t h i s question of aspect-seeing Wittgenstein brings to attention the Jastrow duck/rabbit which can e i t h e r be viewed as the head of a duck or the head of a rabbit. 'The change of aspect: "But surely you would say that the p i c t u r e i s altogether d i f f e r e n t now?" But what i s d i f f e r e n t : my impression? my point of view? - Can I say? I describe the a l t e r a t i o n l i k e a perception; quite as i f the object had a l t e r e d before my eyes. "Now I am seeing t h i s " , I might say (pointing to another p i c t u r e , for example). This has the form of a report of a new perception. The expression of a change of aspect i s the expression of a new perception and at the same time of the perceptions being unchanged. ' 36 Periscope has been divided up in a s i m i l a r way to Passage i n three equal areas l a b e l l e d RED, YELLOW and BLUE. The segment of the scraped c i r c l e i s now l a r g e r and to the right-hand edge. Instead of a r u l e r , a painted hand and fore- arm appear to cause the scraping action. The semi-circle contains a deep i l l u s i o n i s t i c space l i k e the tube of a periscope. Rosalind Krauss believes the arm motif to have a s p a t i a l q u a l i t y of an X-Ray photograph of a limb. But from the reproduction i t seems rather to emulate very c l o s e l y the space of the r u l e r device i n being defined within a f l a t band-like shape. The scraping a c t i o n i s d i f f e r e n t than previously, though. Now i t has a staccato, stop-start rhythm and 59 instantly we are reminded of the probing concentric action of a periscope viewer. Krauss refers to the hand as suggesting the 'materiality of the paint 37 manually applied to the l i t e r a l surface of the canvas'. But taken in a Wittgenstinian context we read i t as the artist spreading before us the holism of vision by separating i t into the segments or aspects that we cannot avoid reducing i t to when attempting to grasp i t either in language or thought. The areas labelled RED, YELLOW and BLUE are a l l the same metallic blues and grays and expose the same concept of meaning as they did in By the Sea. However, there are now additional questions brought up with the use of lettering. Rather than enforce the picture plane they set up a spatial i l l u s i o n even i f an uncertain one. The word RED is echoed by a smaller one behind and antithetically the word BLUE is shadowed by a larger one behind. The word YELLOW is preceded by a mirror image of the f i r s t two letters 'EY'.'b'y the back of the canvas being suggested as in the earlier Canvas, or, as Kozloff asks, has the canvas been 38 folded to produce a negative? Another word RED is shown with the 'R' upside down and the 'ED' back to front, and a word BLUE is turned in upon i t s e l f . 'Cape Hatteras' has an under- 39 lying theme dwelling on space and the travelling through i t and i t is evident that Johns is interested in giving us not a defined or even contradictory one but an experience of a l l space in producing a collection of different aspects of seeing the same word. The irony rests in the fact that even though we view these words from different angles, they are always recognizable as either RED, YELLOW or BLUE. It seems too close to Wittgenstein's similar interest not to be linked. 60 'Hold the drawing of a face upside down and you can't recognize the expression of the face. Perhaps you can see that i t i s smiling, but not exactly what kind of smile i t i s . You cannot imitate the smile or describe i t exactly. And yet the p i c t u r e which you have turned around may be the most exact representation of a person's face.'^0 Land's End employs s i m i l a r thoughts i n terms of l e t t e r i n g . Both pictures contain an arrow pointing downwards. In Land's End the arrow i s made to look more l i k e a sign than i n Periscope and i t points contrary to the d i r e c t i o n of the upstretched arm. The s i t u a t i o n emphasises that i n Diver, 1962 (Plate XXXXIV) where tiny"arrows are placed on two either outstretched or diving-down arms (depending on how you look at them) i n opposing d i r e c t i o n to the limb's gestures. Wittgenstein t a l k s to h i s f i c t i t i o u s questioner: ' "Then can whatever I do be brought into accord with the r u l e ? " - l e t me ask t h i s : what has the expression of a rule - say a sign- post - got to do with my actions? What sort of connection i s there here? - Well perhaps one>: I have been trained to react to t h i s sign i n a p a r t i c u l a r way, and now I do so react to i t . But that i s only to give a casual connection; to t e l l how i t has come about that we now go by the sign-post; not what t h i s going-by-the- sign r e a l l y consists i n . On the contrary; I have further indicated that a person goes by a sign-post only i n so f a r as there e x i s t s a regular use of sign-posts, a custom.'41 What are the v a l i d i t y of r ules i n painting? A s i m i l a r mistake as the above i s often made i n t a l k i n g about Johns' work. If a word 'red' l a b e l s a jumbled c o l l e c t i o n of colour the r e s u l t i s explained as an absurdity or dadaist inten- t i o n . However, the r e s u l t i s an irony on the whole notion of rules g i v i n g meaning. Rules can only be understood within the context of a p a r t i c u l a r custom and Johns i s interested i n the idea of looking not i n the r e i n f o r c i n g of any pre- established ideas about i t . 'To obey a r u l e , to make a report, to give an order, to play a game of chess, are customs (uses, i n t u i t i o n s ) ' ^ 2 If the background of a custom i s removed, the rules embedded i n the custom would also disappear. In t h i s way to analyse Johns' use of arrows as contradictory 61 is merely to see them within a particular institution. Solomon reads the arrows in Diver as creating a tension but Johns is not concerned with presenting contradictions rather he is intent on preventing us resting in any one frame of reference in order that we may see holis t i c a l l y . Absurdity is only brought about by retaining an accepted way of seeing. Wittgenstein asks: 'How does i t come about that this arrow ^points? Doesn't i t seem to carry in i t something besides i t s e l f ? - "No, not the dead line on paper;only the psychical thing, the meaning can do that" - That is both true and false. The arrow points only in the application that a l i v i n g human being makes of i t . ' ^ 3 Wittgenstein realises that following rules is an activity which is involved in virtually everything we do and hence the importance of understanding the concept of the rule, before we become completely subordinate to them. Seen in this way Johns' work is highly moralist. His rigorous search for the curing of 44 misconceptions has the undertones of asceticism. It is a methodology that interestingly enough has close a f f i n i t y with Zen and i t is not at a l l inconcei- vable that the poetic beauty of this approach could have strongly rubbed off from Cage to Johns. K..T. Fann in his analysis of Wittgenstein's philosophy regards i t in much the same way. Wittgenstein's contribution is not really a philosophy but a method, an art: ' .'. . Zen masters were very much concerned with giving peace to those who were tormented by abstract philosophical questions ... [and were] well known for their a b i l i t y to show the nonsensicality of metaphysical questions by replying to the questioner with nonsense, a joke, an irrelevancy, a gesture or what not. The state of 'enlightement' in which the mind is free from philosophical questions is not unlike the state of 'complete cl a r i t y ' Which Wittgenstein was striving for.'^5 Johns' hunt for this 'complete c l a r i t y ' makes i t not too farfetched to suggest that he also enjoys an ironic sense of humour in Periscope and Land's End. In the interests of holism we are given the representational aspects as well. Periscope is painted in the metallic colours associative of a submarine and Land's End can also work as an expressionistic view out to sea with the sun 62 going down on the horizon! 46 'One thing working different ways at different times.' Watchman, 1 9 6 4 (Plate XXXXV) is a more kindly development of the Cr i t i c Sees - probably because the earlier pace deals with the careerist and the latter with the everyday onlooker. Watchman is almost a manifesto of Johns' idea of perception and we gain a great deal of insight into i t s nature from the Sketchbook Notes: 'The watchman f a l l s "into" the "trap" of looking. The "spy" is a di f f e - rent person. "Looking" i s and i s not "eating" and "being eaten" (Cezanne ? - each object reflecting the other). That is there i s con- tinuity of some sort among the watchman, the space, the objects. The spy must be ready to "move" must be aware of his entrances and exists. The watchman leaves his job and takes away no information. The spy must remember and must remember himself and his remembering. The spy designs himself to be overlooked. The watchman "serves" as a warning. Will the spy and the watchman ever meet?'47 The work consists of two stretched canvases, the left-hand one divided into areas labelled RED, YELLOW and BLUE (or partially so anyway) which have the overall muddy tones as i f the three pigments, had been mixed. On the other panel, a chair with the lower part of a body cast of a Japanese art c r i t i c sitting on i t has been 48 inverted and fixed to the upper half. The cast has been truncated at the waist and the remainder of the anatomy replaced by a series of bold brush-strokes of green, orange and greys. To the right are three rectangles representing the primaries. Much of the paint has run down from the figure into and over a coll a - ged newspaper. The whole bottom section of both canvases shows a length of scraped paint which not so much wipes out the painting as 'cheekily' covers i t with a mechanical and arbitrary scheme of dark to lights. The stick that has been used to do the scraping rests against a ba l l near the left-hand edge. The explanatory notes read in a style li k e a cross between Duchamp and 4 9 Wittgenstein. They survey the whole practise of the creation of and the confrontation with the art object in a way reminiscent of the more detailed search in the Green Box notes. There are a number of parallels in Watchman to passages in the Investigations. The significance of labelled areas i s clear. The inverted figure on the chair is 63 being confronted with a schematised version of colour - the primaries - although the s i t t e r ' s own makeup i s one of diverse permutations. It r e c a l l s Wittgenstein's discussion of the play between sample and memory. The sample of a colour appears to be a s t a t i c a f f i r m a t i o n of i t s q u a l i t i e s but even then our c r i t e r i a for looking at i t each time change since our memory changes. Consequently, a sample i s no more ' f i n a l ' than i s our memory. 'Imagine that you were supposed to paint a p a r t i c u l a r colour "C" which was the colour that appeared when the chemical substances X and Y combined - Suppose that the colour struck you as brighter on one day than on another; would you not sometimes say: "I must be wrong, the colour i s c e r t a i n l y the same as yesterday"? This shows that we do not always resort to what memory t e l l s us as the v e r d i c t of the highest court of appeal'50 The brown streaking of the paint on to the collaged newspaper or jour n a l again i n f e r s , as an aside, what published c r i t i c i s m i s fed with and reprocesses into terms that s u i t the p a r t i c u l a r argument the writer i s concerned i n . The s t i c k and b a l l h int at the toys of a c h i l d - a reminder of the 'game' view. Barbara Rose i n her C.A.A. t a l k t h i s year a t t r i b u t e d the use of the chair i n Watchman and According to What d i r e c t l y to a passage i n the Investigations. '...We see component parts of something composite (of a chair for instance). We say that the back i s part of the cha i r , but i t i s i n turn i t s e l f composed of several b i t s of wood; while a l e g i s a si n g l e component part. We also see a whole which changes ( i s destroyed) while i t s component- parts remain unchanged. These are the materials from which we reconstruct that p i c t u r e of r e a l i t y . ' 5 1 Of course nobody could d i s c l a i m t h i s association of imagery completely but i t does not seem that p l a u s i b l e . If the chair r e f e r s s p e c i f i c a l l y to t h i s passage then why has not Johns emphasised t h i s questioning of component parts? A c t u a l l y the passage would have closer associations with the pla s t e r cast. F i e l d suggests that the chair has connections with a passage from Understanding Media - surely read by Johns': 64 'If the nineteenth century was the age of the editorial chair [the private point of view - Field], ours is the century of the psychiatrist's couch. As extension of man the chair i s a specialist ablation of the posterior, a sort of oblative absolute of backside, whereas the couch extends the integral being.'^2 However, even this sounds a l i t t l e speculative to warrant too much attention. Finally we come to what has been regarded as Johns' most d i f f i c u l t and impor- tant painting, According to What, 1964 (Plate XXXXVI). It is made up of seven can- vases which collectively offer some sort of grand apologia of painting. Reading i t from lef t to right the f i r s t panel contains a repeat of the Watchman chair and plaster cast theme with the difference that this time the image is not only facing in the opposite direction but we see the interior surface of the cast as well as a cross-section of the chair. Attached to the bottom of this section by hinges is a small canvas that can be opened or closed. When closed i t shows simply the back of a typical canvas with the t i t l e of the work stencilled on as well as the date and signature. On opening i t we see a profile of Duchamp, the stencilled letters 'M.D.' and a spot of paint that has been allowed to dribble a l i t t l e . The area that this small canvas covers when closed is a 'trompe l ' o e i l ' version of the rear view of a canvas and has been labelled 'stretcher'. Next to a l l this i s a large section very similar to Field Painting. Here the letters of the words RED, YELLOW and BLUE are made of solid aluminum rather than wood and have none of the studio objects magnetically attached as the earlier piece does. Also the neon letter 'R' of Field Painting has been omitted but the letters of 'BLUE' have been constructed bent. To the right is a narrow vertical band that looks a bit lik e a multi-coloured t r a f f i c light and has been described as a colour chart. What would have been the metal stencil used to draw each circle has been bent out and attached at the base. A wider strip of canvas joins this colour band and simply shows a passage from white to blue-black through a procession of blended blue-gray tones. The right-hand section consists of a large area covered with abstract- 65 expressionist brush strokes together with three f l a t rectangles of red, yellow and blue to create a Hoffmanesque 'push-pull' e f f e c t of surface and i l l u s i o n . Beneath t h i s i s an unpainted surface - with the exception of a few splashes and drips from above - on which a common wire coat-hanger i s attached. Half of i t has been bent back to show a trac i n g that coincides with the protruding por- t i o n i n a way that we can read the hanger as a f l a t image and a bent one at the same time. Across the whole length of According to What i s a long s t r i p of c o l l a - ged newspaper and each section i s linked to another by the paint 'bleeding' over the edges. According to What has been read as not only a hommage to Duchamp, but as a possible paradigm to h i s painting Tu m', 1918 (Plate XXXXVII), i n that they both employ colour charts. I could include wire coat-hanger with hat rack, both of which have been traced around. Barbara Rose l i n k s the work with Duchamp i n 53 making the connection between p l a s t e r mold and malic mold and we begin to see that 54 with enough ingenuity the associations could be i n f i n i t e . C e r t a i n l y Duchamp i s thought of but i f we were to r e l y s o l e l y on the work and Johns' Notes there i s no evidence that i t has that much attachment to him. In Johns' notes there i s t h i s i n c l u s i o n : ' P r o f i l e ? Duchamp (?). Distortedas a shadow. Perhaps on a f a l l i n g hinged section. Something that can be erased or s h i f t e d . (Magnetic area) In WHAT use a l i g h t and a mirror.'55 Too many c r i t i c s have wanted to make the t i t l e , According to What either a question which should be answered, "Duchamp", or i n i t ' s 'quality of e l l i p t i c a l abbrevia- 56 t i o n ' a r e f l e c t i o n of Tu m' or any other Duchampian word play. From the Notes the hinged canvas seems to be more i n d i c a t i v e of Duchamp as an onlooker - some- body that could 1 eave, be ' s h i f t e d ' or 'erased'. Nicolas Calas writes: 'Johns i s not r e c a p i t u l a t i n g or remembering but assembling with Duchamp as watchman.'57 66 Even the t i t l e may have been simply intended as 'WHAT' which would lessen Duchamp being the core of the work. From our knowledge of Wittgenstein's contribution the t i t l e takes on quite d i f f e r e n t connotations. It asks a question: "according to what?" - Johns' interpretation? Yours? Mine? Duchamp's? Max Kozloff's? Barbara Rose's? This c r i t i c ' s or that c r i t i c ' s ? and so on. It i s also a statement, "the work has been done according to 'what'." Since the f i n a l word defines nothing s p e c i f i c we are i n v i t e d to use i t i n any way we choose. Johns does not make the t i t l e s o l e l y a question since i t would pose him as a questioner seeking answers. Wittgenstein s i m i l a r l y seeks c l a r i t y not answers; He acknowledges the meaning of a word according to a c e r t a i n usage but that i s not the ent i r e meaning. The use of the chair has already been dealt with. In the hinged canvas, the Duchamp p o r t r a i t i s a copy of h i s Self P o r t r a i t i n P r o f i l e , 1958 [I have chosen the lithograph version of t h i s section since the reproductions of the o r i g i n a l are unsatisfactory (Plate XXXXVIII)]. In the l i g h t of Wittgenstein i t i s c l e a r why Johns chose t h i s image i n p a r t i c u l a r . Wittgenstein describes the diagram below as a white cross on a black background and a black cross on a white background. '(The temptation to say, "I see i t l i k e t h i s " , pointing to the same thing f o r " i t " and " t h i s " ) . Always get r i d of the idea of the pr i v a t e object i n t h i s way: assume that i t constantly changes but that you do not notice the change because your memory constantly deceives you.'58 The Duchamp p o r t r a i t provided Johns with an image he could not r e s i s t . What i s the background and what i s the foreground? In %1972 as a birthday piece to 67 Picasso, Johns made a lithograph, Cup 4 Picasso (Plate XXXXIX) which uses the old par- ty trick of two profiles facing each other which in turn describe a chalice or candle-stick in the middle. Wittgenstein's admonishing of the "private object' once more is Johns' sentiment as well. Richard Field, describes the small paint spot alongside the portrait in terms of Duchamp's declaration, 'a work of art is dependent on the explosion 59 made by the onlooker' as well as a symbol of the sperm that appears in Munch's lithograph The Madonna and a reminder of Duchamp's 'bachelor shots'.^ Be this as i t may, i t ' s loneness - there are many examples of 'impact and drip' within Johns' work - does encourage particular attention and seems to reflect Wittgenstein again. 'But i f a sentence can strike me as lik e a painting in words, and the very individual word in the sentence as like a picture, then i t is no such marvel that a word uttered in isolation and without purpose can seem to carry a particular meaning in i t s e l f . ' ^ Taken in this way the isolated paint spot is particularly appropriate to the 'lonliness' of Duchamp's own unique position, and i t is interesting that when Johns himself refers to this in his obituary he counters i t , as i t were, with a quote of Wittgenstein's. 'He [Duchamp] said that he was ahead of his time. One guesses at a certain lonliness there. Wittgenstein said that "time has only one direction" must be a piece of nonsense'^ The canvas that has i t s prototype in Field Painting is not only a pun on making colour three dimensional by constructing the words in wooden relief but also as in By the Sea an attempt by labelling to establish the stereotype of red, yellow or blue. The letters of the words never quite match up with their imprints. The letters of 'RED' affirm a redness but never of a uniform tone, due not only to the pigements themselves, but also to the different background colours. 68 'Does i t make sense to say people generally agree i n t h e i r judgements of colour? What would i t be l i k e for them not to? - One man would say a flower was red which another c a l l e d blue, and so on. - But what r i g h t should we have to c a l l these people's words "red" and "blue" our 'colour words'? - How would they l e a r n to use these words? And i s the language-game which they learn s t i l l such as we c a l l the use of 'names'of colour'? There are evidently differences of degree here.'^3 The word 'BLUE' has l i t e r a l l y been bent. Does t h i s change i t s meaning i n any way l i k e a colour blue gets 'bent' by i n d i v i d u a l perceptions? The l e t t e r '0' of YELLOW shows i t s imprint to have burst into the colour i t supposedly was meant to s i g n i f y but i t s brightness quickly d u l l s into a d i r t y ochre. It i s as i f Johns has t r i e d to a c t u a l l y depict the mental process between language and image. The colour chart and graded tone scale make the same references as False Start , Jubilee and Diver. The large right-hand area finds p a r a l l e l s i n Wittgenstein's questioning of two and three dimensionality i n drawing (see above quote, page 5.7, Investigations, page 202e) . The long canvas benath shows a coat-hanger that can be viewed i n a number of d i f f e r e n t ways. Johns has taken a very common object, traced around i t and also bent i t , changing i t s nature while at the same time r e t a i n i n g i t s r e c o g n i z a b i l i t y . 'Take an obj ect. Do something to i t . Do something else to i t . i t I I i l i l I I I b4 The procedure imitates Wittgenstein's analysis of the cube diagram: 69 'You could Imagine the i l l u s t r a t i o n ... appearing i n several places i n a book, a text-book for instance. In the relevant text some- thing d i f f e r e n t i s i n question every time: here a glass cube, there an inverted open box, there a wire frame of that shape, there three boards forming a s o l i d angle.'65 '... i f you see the schematic drawing of a cube as a plane fi g u r e c o n s i s t i n g of a square and two rhombi you w i l l , perhaps carry out the order. "Bring me something l i k e t h i s " d i f f e r e n t l y from someone who sees the pi c t u r e three dimensionally.'66 It i s possible that the length of newspaper i s a reference to c r i t i c i s m which w i l l hold i t s e l f responsible f o r embracing a l l these ideas into some manageable u n i t . Johns i n v i t e s , alludes and i l l u d e s but i n the end escapes a l l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for meaning. It may have been Johns whom IGage had i n mind when he s a i d : 'When you st a r t working, everybody i s i n your studio - the past, your f r i e n d s , enemies, the art world and above a l l , your own ideas - a l l are there. But as you continue painting, they s t a r t to leave, one by one, and you are l e f t completely alone. Then, i f you're lucky, even you leave.'*''' CHAPTER FOUR: CONCLUSION 71 Wittgenstein said: 'The real discovery is one that makes one capable of stopping doing philosophy when I want to - the one that gives philosophy peace, so that i t is no longer tormented by questions which bring i t s e l f into question.' 1 If philosophy is a voyage out and back rather than a move towards different things so is art for Johns and consequently, like Duchamp, he does not have to prove anything. Recently he has bought some land in St. Maarten, is building a house and intends to li v e there most of the time. In the interview with Vivien Raynor he was asked what he intended to do there, he replied: 'Swim! No, I'm trying to get i t set up so that I can paint. I assume I ' l l continue painting,. I don't know. I don't have that kind of plan r e a l l y . ' 2 Cage writes that Johns is 'not interested in working but only in playing 3 games' and he says himself: 'I just know that in the studio I'm doing a l l the work and I'm f a i r l y lazy, and have never taken any pleasure in compulsive work.'4 Painting i s not a linear process and i t : i s d i f f i c u l t to imagine there being any anguish with Johns since he is comfortably aware that the moment a work leaves his studio i t w i l l take on different meanings, i t w i l l be 'used' differently. 'There is a great deal of intention in painting; i t ' s rather unavoidable. But when a work is let out by the artist and said to be complete, the intention loosens. Then i t ' s subject to a l l kinds of use and misuse and pun. Occasionally someone w i l l see the work in-a way that even changes its significance for the person who made i t ; the work is no longer "intention", but the thing being seen and someone responding to i t . They w i l l see i t in a way that makes you think that is a possible way of seeing it.'5 Once criticism bothered him, now i t does not matter. 6 He has seen the essential humanity behind i t and Wittgenstein was certainly a teacher in this awareness. In the various interviews many of Johns' comments reveal not only a knowledge, but a deep sympathy with the philosopher's thought. 72 'In one person's work, say i n my work, where there are two or three formal p o s s i b i l i t i e s and i n another person's work where only one of three formal pursuits i s developed - i t doesn't n e c e s s a r i l y mean that he has l e s s present i n h i s work than I have i n mine. This can mean that there i s a new language or aspect of a r t . I don't believe i n the quantity of invention or aesthetic q u a l i t y . When two things come out of the a i r so c l o s e l y , one i s apt to see two a r t i s t s whose work i s r e l a t e d , and compare them and to say that one does more or l e s s ;than another. This, I f e e l , i s j u s t an aspect of your attention at that time. I don't believe i n negating one man's work i n r e l a t i o n to another's.' 7 'One of the c r u c i a l problems i n art i s the business of "meaning i t " . I f you are a painter, meaning the paintings you make; i f you are an observer, meaning what you see. It i s very d i f f i c u l t f o r us to mean what we say or do. We would l i k e to, but society makes t h i s very hard for us to succeed i n doing.'^ 'I think ... the a r t i s t i s not t i e d to the public use of h i s work. There can be feed back, but i f one has to i d e n t i f y with the way one's work i s used, then I think most a r t i s t s w i l l f e e l misused. So I think i t ' s best to cut oneself o f f from what happens after.'9 'If an a r t i s t makes something - or i f you make dhewing gum and every- body ends up using i t as glue, whoever made i t i s given the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of making glue, even i f what he r e a l l y intends i s chewing gum. You can't c o n t r o l that kind of thing. As f a r as beginning to make a work, one can do i t for any reason.' Apart from providing the necessary aid i n understanding Johns' use of imagery i n the l a t e r painting from 1961 on, from a study of Wittgenstein we have learnt two fundamental things about Johns' work:' looking i s r e l a t i v e and, l i k e meaning i n language, the only common denominator i s l i f e - the human a c t i v i t y of looking. This i n turn leads us to view c r i t i c i s m i n a much less anxious and c o n t r o v e r s i a l fashion and the need for polemics and theories are dissolved. Johns' has been a 'problem' to such p r a c t i t i o n e r s since h i s work does not address i t s e l f to t h e i r p a r t i c u l a r appetites. In order to 'eat' i t they must resort to dressing i t i n a way that makes f o r a p a l a t a b i l i t y closer to t h e i r own personal ambitions. Cage summed up these two elements of acknowledgement of l i f e and i t s atrophying e f f e c t on 'rule-book' c r i t i c i s m p e r f e c t l y i n h i s hommage to Johns: 'We imagine ourselves on a tightrope only to discover that we are safe on the ground. Caution i s unnecessary. Nevertheless, we tremble more violently than we did when we thought we were in danger. Johns has given us our freedom but in so doing has denied us the comforts resting secure in our prejudices. FOOTNOTES INTRODUCTION 1. Rosalind Krauss, 'Jasper Johns' Lugano Review, v o l . 1, No. 2, 1965, p.97 2. Norman Malcolm, Ludwig Wittgenstein: A Memoir, Oxford Paperbacks, 1958, p. 51-52. 3. Richard Kostelanetz, John Cage, Praegar,1968, p.3. 75 FOOTNOTES CHAPTER ONE 1. Joseph Young, 'Jasper Johns; An Appraisal', Art International, September, 1969, p. 51. 2. Barbara Rose, 'The Second Generation: Academy & Breakthrough', Artforum, September, 1965. 3. Harold Rosenberg, 'The American Action Painters', Art News, December, 1952, p. 22. 4. Marshall McLuhan, The Medium i s the Massage, Bantam Books, 1967, p. 93. 5. Calvin Tomkins, The Bride, and the Bachelors, Viking Press, 1962, p. 200. I w i l l not go into any discussion on the differences between Johns and Rauschenberg further than t h i s footnote. Perhaps i t could be summarised by Edward Lucie-SmitHs comment that: 'Of the two, Rauschenberg i s the more various and Johns i s the more elegant; elegance has a genuine i f rather uneasy part to play i n any discussion of what these two represent.' Late Modern: The V i s u a l Arts Since 1945, Praegar, 1969, p. 122. This i s i n agreement with P e l l e g r i n i ' s b e l i e f that, unlike Rauschenberg, Johns' painting i s so s e n s i t i v e 'That he i s able to produce extra-ordinary contrasts to the b a n a l i t y of the a r t i c l e s used.' New Tendencies i n Art, (Trans. Robin Larson), Elek, London 1966, p. 215. 6. Clement Greenberg, 'After Abstract Expressionism', Art International, October, 1962, p.27. 7 . i b i d , p. 26-27. 8. Nicolas Calas, Icons and Images of the S i x t i e s , Dutton Paperback, 1971, p. 192. 9. Steinberg asked Johns why he had inserted these p l a s t e r casts. His answer was that they happened to be l y i n g around i n the studio. Leo Steinberg, Jasper Johns, New York, 1963, p. 18. ( o r i g . published i n Metro, Milan, May 1962). 10. Max K o z l o f f , Jasper Johns, Harry Abrams, New York, 1968, p. 15. 11. Leo Steinberg, 'Contemporary Art and The P l i g h t of i t s P u b l i c ' , Harper's Magazine, March 1962, p. 38. 76 12. The degrees of absurdity that writers have gone to i n order to f i n d conclusive messages i n Johns' work should be mentioned. Pincus Witten's 'Theater of The Conceptual: Autobiography and Myth', Artforum, October 1973, p. 41, expresses an attempt to prove that Johns was aware of Duchamp w e l l before h i s reading of Lebel's book i n 1959 and therefore that the target was painted to compliment Duchamp's cast,Objet Dard 1951 with Johns reading i t as 'dart'. Such a tenuous thought would give equal value to the notion that the target image cameffrom Johns' acquaintanship with Cage and Zen. Herrigel's famous book, Zen and the Art of Archery had been translated for the American public i n 1953. It was prefaced by Daisetz Suzuki, under whom Cage was studying at the time; he would almost c e r t a i n l y have read i t . Pincus Witten's claim i s no more valuable than M e l v i l l e ' s d e s c r i p t i o n of Flag on Orange F i e l d , 1957 as a p o l i t i c a l comment on America:, and the dropping of the atomic bomb: "The orange glare at Hiroshima' - 'Master of the Stars and S t r i p e s ' , A r c h i t e c t u r a l Review, March 1965, p. 226. 13. David Sylvester, 'Jasper Johns at the Whitechapel', unpub. t a l k on B.B.C. Third Programme, December 12th, 1964 (excepted i n Kozloff Jasper Johns). 14. K o z l o f f , Jasper Johns, p. 14. 15. See Henry Geldzahler, 'Numbers i n Time: Two American Paintings', Metropolitan Museum B u l l e t i n , A p r i l 1965, pp. 295-298. 16. Walter Hopps, 'An Interview with Jasper Johns', Artforum, March 1965, pp. 34- 35. 17. i b i d . , p. 35. 18. Seen i n t h i s l l i g h t the alphabet and numerical ser i e s are a d i r e c t r e f u t a t i o n of Steinberg's analysisc.of the f l a t images. 'Was i t , I wonder, a p a i n f u l decision that paint was to be no longer a medium of transformation? Probably not; f o r the painter i t must have been merely the taking of the next step. But once taken, i t placed him at a point outside the crowded- room, whence one suddently saw how Franz Kline bundles with Watteau and Giotto . For they are a l l a r t i s t s who use paint and surface to suggest existencies other than surface and paint'. Jasper Johns, p. 18. This i s true for the flags and targets but very d e f i n i t e l y not the case with the numeral and alphabet charts which have been transformed by the paint a c t i v i t y to suggest q u a l i t i e s they do not o r d i n a r i l y have. 19. This becomes even worse (or better) with the l a t e r Colour Numerals serie s of lithographs, 1969 where we are presented with permutations of primary and secondary colours as w e l l . In looking at Joseph Young's diagrams of t h i s s e r i e s (Art International , September 1969, p. 53) i t i s very tempting to search for some meaning behind the graphs. This comes across so force- f u l l y as to suggest i t only being a matter of time before the s t r u c t u r a l i s t s get hold of i t . 20. Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media, McGraw H i l l , 1964, p . l l . 77 21. K o z l o f f , Jasper Johns, p. 19. 22. Johns, together with Rauschenberg and Rosenquist, was i n v i t e d by the S u r r e a l i s t s to exhibit with them i n the 1960, 'International E x h i b i t i o n of Surrealism', d'Arey G a l l e r i e s , New York. 23. See Alan Solomon 'Painting i n New York: 1944 to 1969', Pasadena Art Museum, November 1969 - January 1970 - p. 15. 24. Hopps, Artforum, March 1965, p. 35-36. 25. Steinberg, Jasper Johns, p. 27. 26. K o z l o f f , Jasper Johns, p. 21. 27. i b i d . , p. 21. 28. Rosalind Krauss, Jasper Johns, p. 89. 29. Steinberg, Jasper Johns, p. 23-24. 30. See Barbara Rose, 'The Graphic Work of Jasper Johns. Part I', Artforum, March 1970, pp. 39-45. Rose saw lithography as gaining the surface i n t e g r i t y that Johns, having achieved i n h i s e a r l i e r work,loses from False Start on when he becomes a painter of space, and views the l a t t e r as some sort of compromise. She i s correct i n asserting that Johns' e a r l i e r work i s non-Cubist for the very fa c t that none of them are concerned with r e c o n c i l i n g three dimensional representation with the p i c t u r e plane. But Rose i s wrong i n assuming he i s not a s p a t i a l painter during t h i s period. In fa c t we could argue that Johns has inverted the Cubist procedure since h i s f l a g s , etc. are r e c o n c i l i a t i o n s of the i l l u s i o n i s m of a p a i n t e r l y surface to f l a t images. Greenberg hints at something close to t h i s : 'Everything that usually serves representation and i l l u s i o n i s l e f t to serve nothing but i t s e l f , that i s abstraction; while everything that usually connotes the abstract of decorative - f l a t n e s s bare o u t l i n e s , a l l over or symmetrical design - i s put to the service of representation'(Greenberg, Art International, October 1962, p. 27). This would help to explain Johns' use of encaustic and collage i n that an o i l medium, with such 'a priori' s t r u c t u r i n g as the f l a g image for instance, would not be so successful i n generating the i l l u s i o n i s m inherent i n painting that Johns wished to r e t a i n . Rose intended - and continues doing so* - to e s t a b l i s h h e r s e l f as an authority through way of an adventure into Johns' graphics, posing that s p a t i a l suggestion was taboo for Johns and that graphics became the only v i a b l e medium. But, as I hope to emphasise l a t e r , the retention of the surface's i n t e g r i t y was not the object of Johns' work so much as an exploration into the absurdity of . attempting such a s o l u t i o n . * (I am indebted to Prof. George Rosenberg for h i s resume on Barbara Rose's t a l k at the 1974 Annual Meeting of the C.A.A. held i n D e t r o i t : Recent Graphic Works of Jasper Johns From Representation to Reproduction). 78 31. 'It seems r i d i c u l o u s to speak of the decline of an a r t i s t not yet t h i r t y - f i v e years o l d . Yet that i s the conclusion I f e e l one has to draw from the Jasper Johns retrospective at the Jewish Museum.... there i s c e r t a i n l y l e s s irony i n h i s new paintings. There i s instead a sort of v i s u a l k i n - kiness, and even as a f a c i l e technician Johns has become a l i t t l e seedy.' Sidney T i l l i m , 'Ten Years of Jasper Johns', Arts Magazine, A p r i l 1964, pp. 22-26. 32. Hopps, Artforum, March 1965, p. 35. 33. 'At the s t i l l point of the turning world. Neither f l e s h nor f l e s h l e s s ; Neither from nor towards; at the s t i l l point, there the dance i s , But neither a r r e s t nor movement. And do not c a l l i t f i x i t y , Where past and future are gathered. Neither movement from nor towards, Neither ascent nor decline. Except f o r the point, the s t i l l point. There would be no dance, and there i s only the dance.' T.S. E l i o t , Collected Poems 1909-1962, Faber, 1963, p. 191. 34. Likewise John Cage went into an anechoic chamber a n t i c i p a t i n g he may expe- rience pure s i l e n c e and ended up hearing h i s own body. At the r i s k of scholarship, i t i s tempting to draw such p a r a l l e l s between the two fr i e n d s . We wonder i f perhaps Johns may have used the chance methods of Cage precedence i n determining where and what la b e l s would be used i n False S t a r t . Very o c c a s i o n a l l y the' l a b e l s may match up with the colours but how more i n t e r e s t i n g i t i s when the two are i n wide d i s - agreement. Then the awareness of colour becomes f a r r i c h e r . It i s l i k e the I Ching i n that the more d i s j o i n t e d are the hexagrams the greater need there i s to exercise one's f a c u l t i e s . 35. Krauss, Jasper Johns, p. 88. 36. Calas, Icons and Images, p. 74. 37. Hopps, p. 36. 38. Krauss, Jasper Johns, p. 88. 39. Solomon, Jewish Museum Catalogue, p. 13. 40. G. R. Swenson, 'What i s Pop Art? - An Interview with Jasper Johns'. Art News, February 1964, p. 67. 41. Steinberg, Jasper Johns, p. 24. 42. Rosenberg, Art News, December 1952, p. 22. 43. Michael Levy, Early Renaissance, Style and C i v i l i s a t i o n Series, Penguin Books, 1967, p. 123. 79 44. o p . c i t . , p. 23. In Cage's, 'Jasper Johns; Stories and Ideas', he quotes Johns as regard- ing the dancer, Merce Cunningham's foot as 'another kind of r u l e r ' . (John Cage, A Year From Monday, Wesleyan Univ. Press 1963, p. 82. 45. Michael F r i e d , 'New York L e t t e r ' , Art International, February, 1963, p. 61. 46. K o z l o f f , Jasper Johns, p. 30. 47. V i v i e n Raynor, 'Jasper Johns, (Interview)' Art News, March, 1973, p. 22. 48. Rose, C.A.A. 1974. 80 FOOTNOTES CHAPTER TWO 1. G. R. Swenson,; 'What i s Pop Art? - An Interview with Jasper Johns', Art News, February 1964, p. 66. 2. See Bernhard L e i t n e r , The Architecture of Ludwig Wittgenstein, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, (co-published by Studio International, London) 1973. Bernhard L e i t n e r , 'Wittgenstein's Architecture', Artforum February 1970. 3. See the recently published book by Alan Janik and Stephen Toulmin Wittgenstein's Vienna, Simon and Schuster, New York 1973. 4. Norman Malcolm, Ludwig Wittgenstein: A Memoir, Oxford Paperback, 1958, p.46. 5. Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1961, #1.21, p. 7. 6. i b i d . , #2.0232, p. 11. 7. i b i d . , #2.02331, p. 11. 8. See George Henrik von Wright's 'Biographical Sketch' published i n Malcolm, Wittgenstein: A Memoir, p. 8. 9. op. c i t . , p. 3. 10. i b i d . , #4.462, p. 69. 11. i b i d . , #6.41, p. 145. 12. i b i d . , p. x x i . 13. i b i d . , #6.54, p. 151. 14. Malcolm, Wittgenstein: A Memoir, p. 69. 15. Wittgenstein, P h i l o s o p h i c a l Investigations, (trans. G.E.M. Anscombe) B a s i l Blackwell, 1958, #3, p. 3e. 16.. i b i d . , #6, p. 5e. 17. i b i d . , #32, p. 15e-16e. 18. i b i d . , #43, p. 20e. 19. i b i d . , #23, p. l i e . 20. i b i d . , #67., p. 32e. 21. i b i d . , #98, p. 45e. 22. Justus Hartnack, Wittgenstein and Modern Philosophy (trans. Maurice Cranston) Methuen, 1962, p. 67. 81 23. op. c i t . , #309, p. 103e. 24. i b i d . , #109, p. 47e. 25. i b i d . , #153, p. 60e. 26. i b i d . , #323, p'. 106e. 27. i b i d . , #180, p. 73e. 28. K. T. Fann, Wittgenstein's Conception of Philosophy, B a s i l Blackwell, 1969, p. 107. 29. op. c i t . , #415, p. 125e. 82 FOOTNOTES CHAPTER THREE 1. Vivien Raynor, Art News, March 1973, p. 22. 2. Nicolas Calas, Icons and Images of the S i x t i e s , p. 76. 3. Max Kozloff, Jasper Johns, p. 40. 4. Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus, #2.202 - #2.21, p. 17. 5. pp. c i t . , p. 40. 6. i b i d . , p. 40. 7. i b i d . , p. 27-28. 8. Wittgenstein, P h i l o s o p h i c a l Investigations, #14, p. 7e. 9. op. c i t . , p. 40. 10. i b i d . , p. 41. 11. Wittgenstein, Investigations, #33, p. 16e. 12. Johns has used the r u l e r before i n Painting With Ruler and "Gray", and i t would be a short step to substitute the s t i c k of Device with a r u l e r from t h i s precedent. Good Time Charley 1961 also uses a r u l e r . 13. op. c i t . , #552, p. 147e (abbrev. by Krauss). 14. Rosalind Krauss, 'Jasper Johns', Lugano Review, v o l . 1, no. 2, 1965, p. 92. 15. The spoon and wire belong to Out The Window IT whereas the fork and wire belong to Passage not vice versa. 16. op. c i t . , p. 93. 17. Wittgenstein, Investigations #73, p. 34e-35e. 18. i b i d . , #47, p. 22e-23e. FOOTNOTES CHAPTER FOUR 1. V i v i e n Raynor, Art News, March 1973, p. 20. 2. Michael F r i e d , 'New York Le t t e r ' Art International, February 1963, p. 60-61 Fried likens Johns' development to the Renaissance/Mannerism t r a n s t i o n : ' S i m i l a r l y I t a l i a n Mannerist'.architects d e l i b e r a t e l y accentuated the ambiguities and begged questions inherent i n the great achievements of the High Renaissance', p. 61. 3. See H i l t o n Kramer, 'Month i n Review', Art Magazine, February 1959, p. 49 Newsweek ( e d i t o r i a l ) March 31st, 1958, p. 94-96. 'His Heart Belongs to Dada', - Time, May 4th, 1959 p.58,' Michel Ragon, Cimaise, January, 1959. Pier r e Scheider, 'Art News from P a r i s ' , 'Art News, March 1959, p. 48 Emily Genauer, New York Herald Tribune, A p r i l 3rd, 1960. 4. Jasper Johns, 'Duchamp', Scrap, v o l . 1. December 23rd, 1960. 5. Marcel Duchamp: From the Green Box, (trans. Hamilton) New Haven 1960. 6. Walter Hopps, Artforum, p. 35. 7. P i e r r e Cabanne, Dialogues with Marcel Duchamp (trans.' Ron Padgett) Viking Press, 1971, p. 77. 8. i b i d . , p. 53. 9. Jasper Johns, 'Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968)', Artforum, November 1968. 10. Wittgenstein, Investigations, #109, p.47e. This passage i s explanatory enough to counter T i l l i m ' s complaint: 'But there i s no deep engagement of paint and object so that a new and greater s i n g l e v i s u a l generality does not r e s u l t . On the whole t h i s has been Johns' " c r i s i s " , one from which he has not extricated himself.' Arts Magazine, A p r i l 1964, p. 26. 11. Kozloff, Jasper Johns, p. 10. 12. op. c i t . , p. 202e. LEAF 84 OMITTED IN PAGE NUMBERING. 85 13. Calas, i n Icons and Images elaborates on t h i s phenomenon: 'Experimentation i n art has had the paradoxical e f f e c t of making of methodology the subject matter of a r t , an idea most eloquently i l l u s t r a t e d i n Lichtenstein's use of the brush-stroke as the con- tent of a new image. In the s i x t i e s art i l l u s t r a t e s methodology the way the imagists of old i l l u s t r a t e d the Le'gende Doree, with t h i s d i f f e r e n c e , that today i t i s the c r i t i c who has to j u s t i f y the use of t h i s new subject matter', p. 17-18. 14. Jasper Johns, 'Sketchbook Notes', Art and L i t e r a t u r e , Spring 1965, p. 185. 15. op. c i t . , p. 18. 16. K o z l o f f , p. 10. 17. Wittgenstein, Investigations, #139, p. 54e. 18. i b i d . , #140, p. 553. 19. Robert M e l v i l l e describes such c r i t i c i s m where the motto seems to be, ' i f i t looks d i f f i c u l t make i t d i f f i c u l t ' , as a process of 'mystery-mongering'. (Master of the Stars and S t r i p e s ) , A r c h i t e c t u r a l Review, March 1965, p. 226. 20. Richard F i e l d , Jasper Johns: P r i n t s 1960-1970, Philadelphia Museum of Art, A p r i l 15th - June 14th, 1970. 21. Nicolas Calas has already come to terms with h i s r o l e as c r i t i c , valuing i t as a process of self-knowledge not deceit: 'Let us go on watching how Johns performs, how he repeats a move, or t r i e s a new manoeuvre, p i t t i n g black against white, green against red, blue against orange. I w i l l watch h i s performance i n and out of h i s game, for t h i s i s my game.' Icons and Images, p. 82. 22. David Pears, Wittgenstein, Fontana Modern Masters, 1971, p. 173. 23. John Cage, A Year From Monday, Wesleyan Uni v e r s i t y Press, 1973, p. 75-76. 24. Richard F i e l d , Jasper Johns: P r i n t s F i e l d quotes Johns' comment i n h i s Notes: "Japanese phonetic 'NO' (possessive ' o f ' ) . " Johns has v i s i t e d Japan a number of times and F i e l d extends the question of opposition with t h i s i n mind. 'Thus the 'NO' implies a YES, j u s t as the Noh Theater implies i t s opposite, Kabuki.' 25. Alan Solomon, Jewish Museum Catalogue, p. 15. 26. Wittgenstein, Lectures and Conversations on Aesthetics, Psychology and Religious B e l i e f , (ed C y r i l Barrett) Blackwell, 1966, p. 38-39. 86 27. John Cage, Silence, M.I.T. Press, 1961, p. 102. 28. Kozloff, Jasper Johns, p. 34. Rosenberg i n 'Things the Mind Already Knows' associates the sweeping action of the broom as a n o s t a l g i a towards the target motif. The Anxious Object, Horizon Press, 1964, p. 183. 29. Quoted i n Solomon, Jewish Museum Catalogue, p. 16. 30. John Cage, A Year From Monday, p. 71. 31. Andrew Forge, 'The Emperor's Flag', The New Statesman, v o l . 68, December 11th, 1964, p. 938. 32. Johns, Sketchbook Notes, p. 185. This area i s the same that concerned Leonardo and that Johns picked up on, namely that area where the boundary of a body i s neither a part of the enclosed body nor a part of the surrounding atmosphere. 33. Wittgenstein, Investigations, p. 202e. 34. The t i t l e Passage could have come from Hart Crane's poem of the same name which i n turn comes from Walt Whitman's Passage to India. Barbara Rose i n her C.A.A. t a l k suggests i t comes from Duchamp's The V i r g i n ' s Passage to the Bride. Equally i t could be a t t r i b u t e d Cezanne's use of 'passage' - t h e running together of planes otherwise separated i n space - as we see a reference to the same idea of Cezanne's i n Johns Sketchbook Notes (p. 187) and i n a quote included i n Cage's 'Jasper Johns" Stores and Ideas' (A Year From Monday, p. 79). 35. Hart Crane, Collected Poems of tart Crane (ed. and i n t r o . Waldo Frank) L i v e r i g h t Inc., 1933, p. 32. 36. Wittgenstein, Inve s t i gat ion s, p. 195e-196e. Gombrich r e f e r s to t h i s image i n Art and I l l u s i o n London, Phaidon p. 5-6. 'True, we can switch from one reading to another with increasing r a p i d i t y ; we w i l l also "remember" the rabbit while we see the duck, but the more c l o s e l y we watch ourselves, the more c e r t a i n l y we w i l l discover that we cannot experience a l t e r - native readings at the same time. I l l u s i o n , we w i l l f i n d , i s hard to describe or analyze, for though we may be i n t e l l e c t u a l l y aware of the fa c t that any given experience must be an i l l u s i o n , we cannot, s t r i c t l y speaking, watch ourselves having an i l l u s i o n ' . 37. Krauss, Jasper Johns, p. 92. 38. K o z l o f f , Jasper Johns, p. 34. 39. 'The captured fume of space foams i n our ears' arid i s penetrated by the present day image, the aeroplane: 'Man hears himself an engine i n a cloud ... the nasal whine of power whips a new universe.' Hart Crane, Collected Poems, p. 32-34. 87 40. Wittgenstein, Investigations, p. 198e. 41. i b i d . , #198, p. 80e. 42. i b i d . , #199, p. 81e. 43. i b i d . , #454, p. 132e. 44. Johns, i n f a c t , i s often described i n t h i s way. Vivian Raynor says: 'Nevertheless, i t i s hard - and p o i n t l e s s probably to t r y - to r e c o n c i l e Johns' aura of s o c i a b i l i t y with the other impression of almost p r i e s t l y apartness.' Art News, March., 1973, p. 22. Cage writes: 'The thermostats are f i x e d to the radiators but lead i n e f f e c t u a l l y to two bare wires. The Jaguar repaired and ready to run s i t s i n a garage unused. It has been there since October. An e l e c t r i c i a n came to f i x the thermostats but went away before h i s work was f i n i s h e d and never returned.The a p p l i c a t i o n f or the r e g i s t r a t i o n of the car has not been found ... For odd t r i p s a car i s rented. If i t gets too hot a window i s opened. The freezer i s f u l l of books.' A Year From Monday, p. 78-79. 45. K. T. Fann, Wittgenstein:?^ Conception of Philosophy, p. 110. 46. Johns, Sketchbook Notes, p. 192. 47. i b i d . , p. 185-187. 48. See F i e l d , Jasper Johns: P r i n t s 1960-1970. 49. Barbara Rose, draws the same p a r a l l e l between the Sketchbook Notes and Investigations. C.A.A., 1974. 50. Wittgenstein, Investigations, #56, p. 28e. William Lycan i n h i s a r t i c l e , 'Gombrich, Wittgenstein, and the Duck- Rabbit, Journal of Aesthetics, v o l . 30, Winter 1971, examines the degree to which Art and I l l u s i o n and the Investigations are i n agree- ment. He c i t e s an example of actual colour dualism: 'But consider the colour of a s l i p of litmus paper i n a p e r f e c t l y neutral e l e c t r o l y t i c s o l u t i o n . Sometimes i t i s l i t e r a l l y impossible to say whether the paper i s blue or pink. In t h i s case, "Now I see i t as blue ... now pink" makes sense, even i f the colour o f i t h e paper a c t u a l l y remains constant.' p. 236. 51. i b i d . , #59, p. 29e. 52. Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media, p. 5. Quoted i n F i e l d Jasper Johns: P r i n t s 1960-1970, 1970. 53. Rose, C.A.A. 1974. 88 54. Walter Hopps i n the brochure for Gemini's e d i t i o n of Johns' lithographs Fragments - According to What, A p r i l 1971 takes t h i s association to absurd lengths: 'Both paintings are of elongated and h o r i z o n t a l format, combine various painting and graphic techniques, include l i t e r a l ' objects and the i l l u s i o n of other l i t e r a l objects and portray images derived s p e c i f i c a l l y from p r i o r work? We have simply to look at a Rauschenberg, Dine, Wesselman, etc. to see how Johns' painting s p e c i f i c a l l y f i t s Tu m' . 55. Johns, Sketchbook Notes, p. 185. 56. Krauss, Jasper Johns, p. 94. 57. Calas, Icons and Images, p. 81. 58. Wittgenstein, Investigations, p. 207e. 59. Dore Ashton, 'An Interview with Marcel Duchamp', Studio International June 1966, p. 245. 60. F i e l d , Jasper Johns: P r i n t s 1960-1970. 61. Wittgenstein, Investigations, p. 215e. 62. Johns, 'Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968)', Artforum, November, 1968. 63. op. c i t . , p. 226e. 64. Johns, Sketchbook Notes, p. 192. 65. op. c i t . , p. 193e. 66. i b i d . , #74, p. 35e. As an aside, i t i s i n t e r e s t i n g to note that i n Ko z l o f f ' s reproduction the shadow cast by the bent coat-hanger and wire that i s attached, a c c i d e n t a l l y i s tangential to the bends. In the Fragments - According to What lithograph: Coathanger and Spoon t h i s l i n e i s represented by one painted i n the colours of the rainbow or spectrum. Johns used Kozloff's reproduction as a model rather than j u s t the work i t s e l f (Walter Hopps, Gemini brochure, 1971) and the spectrum l i n e becomes a comment on the nature of l i g h t that casts the shadow. 67. Quoted i n Maurice Tuchman, The New York School, Thames and Hudson, 1965, p. 76. 89 FOOTNOTES CONCLUSION 1. Wittgenstein, Investigations, #133, p. 51e. 2. V i v i e n Raynor, Art News, March 1973, p. 21. 3. Cage, A Year From Monday, p. 77. 4. op. c i t . , p. 21. 5. G. R. Swenson, Art News, February 1964, p. 67. 6. 'I object to none anymore. I used to object to each as i t occurred'. Swenson, p. 43. 7. Joseph Young, Art International, September 1969, p. 54. 8. i b i d . , p. 54. 9. Raynor, Art News, p. 21. 10. Swenson, Art News, p. 66. 11. A spectacular example of t h i s type of w r i t i n g i s found i n Kozloff's 'Johns and Duchamp', Art International, March 1964, p. 45. 'Each of Johns' strokes i s a l a r v a l p a l p i t a t i o n of pleasure i n the liveness of the pigment - a stroke whose morbidezza and cadenced slowness s t r i v e s to ideate sense i t s e l f . ' 12. Cage, A Year From Monday, p. 83. 90 PLATES 91 PLATE I Flag, 1954. Encaustic and collage on canvas 41-1/4 x 60-3/4" C o l l e c t i o n P h i l i p Johnson, New Canaan Connecticut. PLATE II Target With Pla s t e r Casts, 1955. Encaustic and collage on canvas with p l a s t e r casts, 51 x 44 x 3-1/2". C o l l e c t i o n Mr. and Mrs. Leo C a s t e l l i , New York. 92 m\\W \WW\W\x PLATE IV Construction with Toy Piano, 1954. Graphite and collage with toy piano, 11 x 9 x 21". C o l l e c t i o n Mr. and Mrs. R. S c u l l , New York. PLATE V U n t i t l e d , 1954. O i l and collage with p l a s t e r cast, 26-1/4 x PLATE VI Large Green Target, 1955. Encaustic and collage on canvas, 60 x 60". Museum of Modern Art, New York. PLATE VIII Figure 5, 1955. Encaustic and collage on canvas 17-1/2 x 14" C o l l e c t i o n the a r t i s t . 95 PLATE IX Charles Demuth. I Saw The Figure 5 in Gold, 1928. Oil 36 x 29-3/4". Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. PLATE X Gray Alphabets, 1956. Encaustic and collage on canvas 66 x 49". Private collection. PLATE XI Collection Mr. and Mrs. John Powers. PLATE XII Gray Alphabets, 1956. Detail of Plate X. PLATE XIII U n t i t l e d , c.1954. O i l and collage on s i l k . C o l l e c t i o n Edwin Janss, Los Angeles. PLATE XIV Tango, 1955. Encaustic on canvas 43 x 55". C o l l e c t i o n Mr. and Mrs. Burton Tremaine, Meriden, Connecticut. PLATE XVI Canvas, 1956. Encaustic and collage on wood and canvas 30 x 25". C o l l e c t i o n the a r t i s t . 99 PLATE XVII Drawer, 1957. Encaustic on canvas and wood, 30-1/2 x 30-1/2 Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Massachusetts. PLATE XVIII Gray Rectangles, 1957. Encaustic on canvas, 60 x 60" C o l l e c t i o n Mr. and Mrs. Vi c t o r Ganz, New York PLATE XIX Painting With a B a l l , 1958. Encaustic on canvas 31-1/2 x 24-1/2. C o l l e c t i o n Edward Power, London. PLATE XX C a l i f o r n i a . PLATE XXI The, 1957. Encaustic on canvas, 24 x 20". Collection Mrs. Herbert Lee, Belmont, Massachusetts. PLATE XXII Shade, 1959. Encaustic on canvas with objects, 52 x 39". Collection Mrs. Leo Steinberg, New York. PLATE XXIV Delaunay, Windows on the C i t y , 1912. PLATE XXV False Start, 1959. O i l on canvas, 67-1/4 x 54". C o l l e c t i o n Mr. and Mrs. R. S c u l l , New York. PLATE XXVI Magritte, The Use of Words, 1928-29, 21-1/2 x 28-1/2, William Copley, New York. PLATE XXVII Jubilee, 1959. Oil on canvas 67-1/4 x 54". Collection Robert Rauschenberg, New York. PLATE XXVIII Out the Window, 1959. Encaustic and collage on canvas 54-1/2 x 40". Collection Mr. and Mrs. R. Scull, New York. PLATE XXIX 105 PLATE XXX Painting with Two Balls, 1 9 6 0 . Encaustic and collage on canvas with objects, 65 x 5 4 " . Collection the a r t i s t . 106 PLATE XXXII Painting with Ruler and "Gray", 1960. O i l and collage on canvas with objects, 32 x 32". C o l l e c t i o n Mr. and Mrs. Helman St. Louis. PLATE XXXIV 108 PLATE XXXVI Passage, 1962. Encaustic and collage on canvas with objects, 54 x 40". Collection Georges Marci de Saqqarah, Gstaad, Switzerland. PLATE XXXVIII Out the Window I I , 1962. O i l on canvas with objects, 72 x 48". C o l l e c t i o n the a r t i s t . PLATE XXXIX F i e l d Painting, 1963-64. O i l on canvas with objects. 72 x 36-3/4. C o l l e c t i o n the a r t i s t . PLATE XXXX The C r i t i c Sees, 1961. Sculpmetal on p l a s t e r with glass. 3-1/4 x 6-1/4 x 2". C o l l e c t i o n Mr. and Mrs. R. S c u l l , New York. I l l PLATE XXXXI No, 1961. Encaustic collage and sculp- metal on canvas with objects, 68 x 40". C o l l e c t i o n the a r t i s t . 112 PLATE XXXXIII Land's End, 1963. O i l on canvas with wood. 67 x 48". C o l l e c t i o n Edwin Janss, Los Angeles. PLATE XXXXIV Diver, 1962. O i l on canvas with objects 90 x 170". Albert A. L i s t Family C o l l e c t i o n . 113 PLATE XXXXVI According to What, 1964. Oil on canvas with objects, 88 x 192". Collection Edwin Janss, Los Angeles. PLATE XXXXVII Duchamp Tu m', 1918. 27-1/2 x 122-3/4. Collection Katherine S. Dreier. PLATE XXXXIX Cup 4 Picasso, 1972 lithograph, Leo C a s t e l l i Gallery. BIBLIOGRAPHY 117: Alloway, Lawrence. 'The Evolution of Jasper Johns'. Arts Magazine, v o l . XLIV (September, 1969), p. 40. 'Popular Culture and Pop Art'. Studio International, v o l . 178 (July/August, 1969), pp. 16-21. Essay i n Six Painters and the Object catalogue of e x h i b i - t i o n New York: Guggenheim Museum, 1963. 'Spectrum of the Monochrome'. Arts Magazine, v o l . XLV (December, 1970), p. 30. Ashberry, John. Ashton, Dore. 'Brooms and Prisms' pp. 58-59+. Art News, v o l . 65, (March, 1966) 'Acceleration i n Discovery and Consumption'. Studios International, v o l . CLXXV (May, 1964), p. 212. 'An interview with Marcel Duchamp'. Studio International, v o l . CLXXI (June 1960), pp. 244-247. Battcock, Gregory (ed.). Minimal Art: A C r i t i c a l Anthology, New York; Dutton Paperbacks, 1968. The New Art, New York, Dutton Paperbacks, 1966. Bernstein, Roberta. Introduction to Jasper Johns:Decoy, The P r i n t and The Painting, exhit. cat., Hofstra University: Emily Lowe Gallery, 1972. Cabanne, Pi e r r e . Cage, John. Calas, Nicolas. Dialogues with Marcel Duchamp (translated Ron Padgett), New York: Viking Press, 1971. A Year From Monday: New Lectures and Writings, Middletown, Connecticut. Wesleyan Uni v e r s i t y Press, 1969. Siiencei,• cCambridge-, Mass. M.I.T. Press, 1961. Icons and Images of the S i x t i e s , New York: Dutton Paperback, 1971. C a v e l l , Stanley. Must We Mean What We Say?, New York: Scribner, 1969. Contemporary Graphics Published by U.L.A.E., Minneapolis: Dayton's Galle r y , 1968. Crane, Hart. Domingo, W i l l i s . Collected Poems of Hart Crane (ed. and i n t r o . Waldo Frank), New York: L i v e r i g h t Inc., 1933. 'Meaning i n the Art of Marcel Duchamp', Artf orum, v o l . IX (January, 1972), p. 63. du P l e s s i x , Francine (ed.). 'Painters and Poets', Art i n America, v o l . 53 (October/November, 1965), pp. 24-56. 118 Factor, Donald. (Review) Artforum, v o l . 1 (February, 1963), p. 17. Fann, K. T. Wittgenstein's Conception of Philosophy, London:.Basil Blackwell, 1969. Jasper Johns: P r i n t s 1960-1970, New York: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1970. 'New York Letter'., Art International, v o l . VII (February, 1963), p. 60-62. Three American Painters, Noland, S t e l l a , O l i t s k i , Cambridge, Mass.: Fogg Art Museum, 21st A p r i l - 30th May, 1965. 'The Emperor's Flag'. The New Statesman, v o l . 68 (December 11th, 1964), pp..938-939. 'Numbers i n Time: Two American Paintings'. Metropolitan Museum B u l l e t i n , v o l . 23 ( A p r i l , 1965), pp. 295-298. 'The Pregnant Woman, The Flag, the Eye: Three New Themes i n 20th Century Art'. Journal of Aesthetics and Art C r i t i c i s m (Winter, 1962), p. 117+. F i e l d , Richard. F r i e d , Michael. Forge, Andrew. Geldzahler, Henry. G o t t l i e b , Carla. Gombrich, E.H. Gray, Cleve. Art and I l l u s i o n . London, Phaidon, 1960. 'Tatyana Grosman's Workshop,'. Art i n America, v o l . 53 (December/January, 1965-66), pp. 83-85. Greenberg, Clement. 'After Abstract Expressionism'. Art International, v o l . 6 (October, 1962), pp. 24-32. 'Post Painterly Abstraction'. Art International, v o l . 8 (Summer, 1964), pp. 63-65. H a l l e t , Garth. Hartnack, Justus, H e l l e r , Ben. Wittgenstein's D e f i n i t i o n of Meaning as Use, Fordham Uni v e r s i t y Press, 1967. Wittgenstein and Modern Philosophy (translated, Maurice Cranston). London: Methuen, 1962. 'Jasper Johns' School of New York: Some Young Painters (ed. B. H. Friedmann), New York: Grove Press, 1959, pp. 30-35. Hopps, Walter. Fragments - According to What (Brochure) Gemini G.E.L., Los Angeles, A p r i l , 1971. 'An Interview with Jasper Johns'. Artforum, v o l , 3, (March, 1965), pp. 33-36. Hughes, Robert. 'Jasper Johns' Elusive Bull's-Eye'. Horizon, v o l . 14 (Summer, 1972), pp. 20-29. 119 Johns, Jasper. Johnson, E l l e n . K o z l o f f , Max. Krauss, Rosalind. "Duchamp'. Scrap, v o l . 1 (December 23rd, 1960). 'Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968)'. .Artforum, v o l . 7, (November, 1968). Interview i n The Popular Image, catalogue of e x h i b i t i o n . Washington, D.C.: Washington Gallery of Modern A r t , 1963. 'Sketchbook Notes'. Art and L i t e r a t u r e , no. 4, (Spring, 1965), pp. 185-192. Statement i n 16 Americans, New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1959. 'Thoughts on Duchamp'. Art i n America, v o l . LVII (July, 1969), p. 31. 'Jim Dine and Jasper Johns: Art about Art". Art and L i t e r a t u r e , v o l . 6 (Autumn, 1965), pp. 128-140. 'Art', The Nation, v o l . 198 (March 16th, 1964), pp. 274-276, Jasper Johns, New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1968. 'Jasper Johns: The "Colours"; The "Maps"; The "Devices"':! Artforum, v o l . 6 (November, 1967), pp. 26-31. 'Johns and Duchamp'. Art International, v o l . VIII, (March, 1964) , pp. 42-45. 'Pop Culture, Metaphysical Disgust and The New Vulgarians'. Art International, (March, 1962) . 'Jasper Johns'. The Lugano Review, v o l . 1, no. 2, (1965), pp. 84-113. Kostelanetz, Richard (ed). John Cage, New York: Praegar, 1968. Lebel, Robert. Leider, R. Lippard, Lucy. Littman, Robert, Marcel Duchamp (translated G.H. Hamilton), New York: Grossman Publishers, 1967. 'In The American Grain'. F r o n t i e r , v o l . 16, (October, 1965), pp. 23-24. Pop A r t , New York: Praegar, 1966. 'Notes' i n Jasper Johns: Decoy, The Print and The Painting, exhib. cat., Hofstra U n i v e r s i t y : Emily Lowe Ga l l e r y , 1972. Lucie-Smith, Edward. Late Modern: The V i s u a l Arts since 1945, New York: Praegar, 1969. Lycan, William. 'Gombrich, Wittgenstein, and the Duck-Rabbit'. Journal of Aesthetics, v o l . 30 (Winter, 1971), pp. 229-237. 120 Malcolm, Norman. Ludwig Wittgenstein: A Memoir, London: Oxford Paperbacks, 1962. McLuhan, Marshall. The Medium i s the Massage, Toronto: Bantam Brooks, 1967. Understanding Media, New York: McGraw H i l l , 1964. M e l v i l l e , Robert. 'Master of the Stars and S t r i p e s ' , A r c h i t e c t u r a l Review, VOL, CXXXVII (March, 1965), pp. 225-228. Michelson, Annette. 'The Imaginary Object: Recent Pr i n t s by Jasper Johns', A r t i s t s ' Proof, v o l . 8 ; (1968), pp. 44-49. Morris, Robert. 'Beyond Objects - Notes on Sculpture, Part IX'. Artforum, v o l . 7 ( A p r i l , 1969), p. 50-55. O'Hara, Frank. 'Skin with O'Hara Peom', Art i n America, v o l . 53, (October, 1965), pp. 26-27. Pears, David. Wittgenstein, Fontana Modern Masters, London: C o l l i n s , 1971. P e l l e g r i n i , Aldo. New Tendencies i n Art (translated, Robin Carson) London: Elek, 1966. Pincus-Witten, Robert. 'Theater of the Conceptual: Autobiography and Myth'. Artforum, (October, 1973), pp. 41-44. (Review), Artforum, v o l . 4, (March, 1966), pp. 47-50. Porter, F a i r f i e l d . 'The Education of Jasper Johns'. Art News, v o l . LXII, (February, 1964), p. 44+. Prak, N.L. 'Persistent Schemes: the Quest for a Neutral Form'. Art International, v o l . XIV, (September, 1970), p. 74. Raynor, V i v i e n . 'Jasper Johns - An Interview', Art News, (March 8^=1973), pp. 20-22. P r i t c h e l l , George (ed.). The Phi l o s o p h i c a l Investigations, Doubleday, 1966. Restany, P i e r r e . 'Jasper Johns and the Metaphysic of The Common Place'. Cimaise, v o l . VIII, (September, 1961), pp. 90=97. Rose, Barbara. American Art Since 1900, New York: Praegar, 1967. ' 'Graphic Work of Jasper Johns - Part I. Artforum, v o l . 8, (March* 1970), pp. 39-45. 'Graphic Work of Jasper Johns - Part I I ' . Artforum, vol.8, (September, 1970), pp. 65-74. 'The Second Generation: Academy and Breakthrough'. Artforum, v o l . 4, (September, 1965), pp. 53-63. 121 Rosenberg, Harold. Rosenblum, Robert. Sandler, Irving. Seckler, Dorothy. Solomon, Alan. Stein, Judith. Steinberg, Leo. Swenson, G.R. Sylve s t er, Dav i d . T i l l i m , Sydney. Tomkins, Calvin. 'The American Action Painters', Art News, v o l . LI, (September, 1952), pp. 22-25. The Anxious Object, New York: Horizon Press, 1964. 'Jasper Johns'. Art International , v o l . 7 (September, 1960) . 'The New Cool Art'. Art i n America, v o l . L I I I , (February, 1965), p. 96. 'New York L e t t e r ' . Art International, v o l . 5, ( A p r i l 5th, 1961) . 'Folklore of the Ranal'. Art i n America, v o l . L, (Winter, 1962) , p. 58. Jasper Johns, cat. of exhib., New York: Jewish Museum, 1964. Jasper Johns: Lead R e l i e f s , (brochure) Gemini, G.E.L., Los Angeles, 1969. 'The New Art', The Popular Image, cat, of exhib., Washington, D.C: Washington Gallery of Modern A r t , 1963. Painting i n New York; 1944-1969, cat. of exhib., Pasadena Art Museum, 1969. 'Jasper Johns: The Spy and The Watchman', unpublished grad. seminar paper, University of Pennsylvania, Phil a d e l p h i a , 1967. 'Contemporary Art and The Pl i g h t of i t s Publ i c ' , Harper's Magazine, v o l . 224, (March, 1962), pp. 31-39. 'Jasper Johns', Metro, v o l . 415 (May, 1962), 34i ?pages. 'What i s Pop Art? - An Interview with Jasper Johns'. Art News, v o l . LXII (February, 1964), p. 43+. 'Jasper Johns at The Whitechapel'.unpublished t a l k on B.B.C., Third Programme, (December 12th, 1964). 'Art i n a Coke Climate'. Sunday Times Magazine (January 26th, 1964). 'Ten Years of Jasper Johns'. Arts Magazine, v o l . XXXVIII ( A p r i l , 1964), pp. 22-26. (Review), Arts Magazine, v o l . 37 (March, 1963), p. 62. The Bride and The Bachelors, New York: Viking Press, 1968. Tuchman, Maurice. The New York School, London, Thames and Hudson, 1965. Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Lectures and Conversations on Aesthetics, Psychology and Religious Belief, (ed. Cyril Barrett), Oxford: Blackwell, 1966. Philosophical Investigations (translated, G.E.M. Anscombe), Oxford: Blackwell, 1958. Tractatus Logico - Philosophieus, London: Routledge Kegan and Paul, 1961. 'The Art Lesson'. Studio International, (June, 1971), pp. 278-283. 'Jasper Johns: An Appraisal'. Art International, vol. XIII (September, 1969), pp. 50-56. Wollheim, Richard. Young, Joseph.

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