Skip to Content

A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Etel Adnan: Light’s New Measure

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum / New York / Art

Discussing her artistic practice, the late poet and philosopher Etel Adnan, who died last November, explains, “It seems to me I write what I see, paint what I am.” Born in Beirut, in 1925, to a Syrian father and a Greek mother, Adnan lived in France, Lebanon, and the United States. While her essays analyzed war and issues of social justice, her paintings read like distillations of faith. She used a palette knife to place simple geometries on canvas, creating vibrant landscapes that sit between figuration and abstraction. In Untitled (2010), a circle of yellow floats above two horizontal stripes, one coral red, one pale blue—sun, land, water. Similar works, inspired by the view of Mount Tamalpais from Adnan’s home in Sausalito, California, are on view. —E.C.

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum 1071 5th Ave, New York, NY 10128, USA
Get Directions »
Start a New Search
Subscribers Only

Start your free trial to access the full Arts Intel Report

Subscribe to Air Mail to access every article
and search our entire Arts Intel Report.

Subscribe Now

Already a subscriber? Sign in here.