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Caroline Giepert

Prof. Givens

ARTH 4420

3 April 2017

The Rothko Chapel: The Re-Spiritualizing of Modern America

The name itself invokes religious connotations and obviously harkens back to a period in

the history of art in which major art commissions were granted by the Catholic Church, the

richest institution in the Western world during artistic periods like the Renaissance. The secular

shift ushered in with Modernity resulted in the decline of the Church’s power, and monumental,

sacred spaces with ambitious design programs were no longer prominent - it is intriguing that a

contemporary, American abstract artist, especially a Jewish man, would be charged with

designing a chapel. Rothko Chapel, devoid of the typical figurative religious art, offers a

different type of spiritual sanctuary. Welcoming to all faiths and traditions, it serves as both a

community center and a serene environment for meditation. The Rothko Chapel represents the

more modern notion of spirituality as an individualistic and universal experience as opposed to

the orthodox rites of Judeo-Christian religions. Mark Rothko truly appreciated the contemplative

solemnity of a chapel, writing extensively on the spiritual qualities of his artworks. Furthermore,

the Chapel stands as so much more than simply an art object; it becomes a subjective event,

filled with transcendental potential. In a time of otherwise religious decline, Rothko is utilizing

themes of the sublime, human tragedy, mortality, and the collective unconscious to provide a

deeply personal spiritual experience for the visitors.

A remarkably prolific artist, Mark Rothko produced over eight-hundred works on

canvas, which represent different stylistic movements, from Surrealist figurative art to the
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abstract Color Field paintings that have made him famous. Marcus Rotkovitch was born in

Dvinsk, a predominantly Jewish town in the Russian Empire, on September 25, 1903.1 At age

five, his parents enrolled him in a Cheder or Talmud Torah, a traditional Jewish school, in which

he would learn Hebrew and the rituals of Judaism.2 However, due to the rising anti-Semitism in

Europe, his family moved to Portland, Oregon in 1913.3 As a Russian Jewish immigrant, Rothko

faced his fair share of obstacles in this particularly conservative and skeptical time in America.

Although he was accepted to Yale University on a full scholarship, he soon became disillusioned

with the lack of focus on the arts and literature as well as the anti-Semitism, causing him to leave

for New York City at age twenty.4 Fortunately for him, he arrived in New York just as the city

was becoming globally recognized as an artistic and cultural center. This new phenomenon was

mostly due to the contributions made by European expatriate avant-garde artists, like himself,

many of them moving towards abstraction. Unlike the imagery of Christianity, Judaism is

mostly devoid of all these pictorial innovations, so it makes sense that many Jewish artists are

working in the abstract. Rothko likely chose to move towards nonobjective paintings because it

more effectively conveyed basic human emotions by allowing the viewer to perceive these things

for themselves.

Before his transition to total abstraction, Rothko was painting scenes from Judeo-

Christian legends, Egyptian and ancient Greek myths, and more, demonstrating his hermetic

1
Diane Waldman, Mark Rothko in New York (New York: Guggenheim Museum, 1994), 12.
2
Annie Cohen-Solal, Mark Rothko: Toward the Light in the Chapel (New Haven: Yale
University Press, 2015), 12. His father sent him to this school because it was the first step in
training to be a rabbi, a fate that would exempt Mark from the draft. Anti-Semitism was rampant
throughout Western Europe at this time, and it was not uncommon for Jewish men in the army to
be killed by their fellow soldiers.
3
Ibid., 14.
4
Ibid., 48.
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understanding of the world and affinity for primitive art. In The Artist’s Reality, he devoted an

entire chapter to The Myth, demonstrating his expansive knowledge on various cultures and their

religious or mystic beliefs.5 Early in his career, he began working at the Brooklyn Jewish Center

Academy, where he taught children from 1929 until 1952.6 This job helped him realize

children’s art spiritual potential and connection to primitive art. He held an affinity for primitive

art because he felt that early man better understood the need for connection with the spirit. In

addition, years of working with children likely gave rise to the simplicity and colorfulness of his

mature style. Therefore, it was at the Brooklyn Center that he truly began to develop his art

theory that painting was another form of language to record shared experiences.7 While teaching

here, he also joined The Ten in 1935, an artist collective of mostly Jewish contemporaries all

working in the expressionistic style and inspired by European art traditions.8 At this time, his

artworks depict scenes of mythologies, archaic art, and archetypes. One could possibly compare

this to the ten parts of Sephiroth, but with Rothko’s strong background in Judaism, he was likely

familiar with the Kabbalah and the mystical side of Judaism. He would have agreed with the

idea of wisdom as a tool for transcendence and unity as he was a great intellectual himself. As

evidenced by his very late compositions done for the Rothko Chapel, his canvases take on this

concept of transcendence and reaching towards the divine.

5
Mark Rothko, The Artist's Reality: Philosophies of Art, Ed. Christopher Rothko (New Haven:
Yale University Press, 2004). This book was put together by the artist’s son Christopher using
extensive manuscripts that Rothko had written, but never officially published. This manuscript
is pertinent in researching the artist because Rothko painted abstract paintings of ideas, so these
writings give us some insight into what Rothko was meaning to convey.
6
Carla Main, "Rothko's Roots," New Criterion 34.6 (2016), 74.
7
Cohen-Solal, Mark Rothko: Toward the Light in the Chapel, 65.
8
Waldman, Mark Rothko in New York, 18.
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Rothko understood line, form, and color to be the Holy Trinity, capable of the most

powerful means of expression.9 These same formal elements were utilized by Romantic

painters, and it is evident that Rothko was influenced by them since he was reviving the same

concept of the sublime seen in their breath-taking landscapes. For instance, Rosenblum opens

his book by comparing the dark sea of Caspar David Friedrich’s Monk by the Sea (1809) (Fig.1)

to the Color Field paintings by Rothko (Fig.2), since these both are meant to express “the

nothingness.”10 In Rothko’s large abstract works, the monk contemplating the vast open sea is

replaced with the actual viewer who is faced with the brooding emptiness of the endless beyond

represented in the paintings, especially his later dark pictures. The conclusion can be drawn that

Rothko’s rectangles of colors represent the most simplified version of Romantic landscapes with

underlying themes of mysticism, hence coming full circle from Friedrich to Rothko.11 His

horizontal strips mirror the division of landscape and seascape, Earth and the cosmos, the

corporeal and the ethereal. These clearly delineated blocks of colors call to mind the notion of

parallelism as representative of ultimate unity, defined by the balance of two opposites, which

will continue to be a theme in his Chapel paintings.

Mark Rothko is most known for his Color Field paintings, in which the expressions of

emotions through color and size replaced the overt themes of mysticism in the scenes and titles

of his figurative art. Modern art was searching for a new way to symbolize and illustrate myths,

inevitably turning to the sensuality and pureness of abstraction. In this way, modern abstract

works became a form of escapism from the violence of World War II, similar to the way in

9
Rothko, The Artist's Reality: Philosophies of Art, 19.
10
Robert Rosenblum, Modern Painting and the Northern Romantic Tradition: Friedrich to
Rothko (New York: Harper & Row, 1994), 10.
11
Ibid., 213.
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which people were turning to alternative spiritualties. Artists begin using their art as a means to

express universal emotions and the collective unconscious of humanity. For instance, Rothko

famously stated,

I’m interested only in expressing basic human emotions, tragedy, ecstasy, doom, and so
on – and the fact that lots of people break down and cry when confronted with my
pictures shows that I communicate those basic human emotions… The people who weep
before my pictures are having the same religious experience I had when I painted them.12

He was painting truths and making impressions, forcing viewers to confront their own inner

psyche and how it was connected to everyone else. These nonobjective works transcend any

specific theme or narrative, making them universal and open to personal revelations.

Albeit stylistically modern, the nonobjective and untitled paintings of Mark Rothko were

a regression to primitive and ancient mystic sources as well as the more modern writings of the

philosopher Nietzsche. Although he was raised Jewish, through his writings and paintings, it is

evident that he held a universal understanding of mankind and wanted his artworks to retain the

sacred identity of ancient art. He had become disenchanted with modern society, yearning for

the fulfillment of ancient myth as a form of escapism. For example, Gilbert Murray published

Aeschylus: The Creator of Tragedy in 1940, in which he juxtaposes “archaic myth and modern

cataclysm” in the face of war.13 This comparison begins to take shape in Rothko’s mature

canvases, specifically because he believed Greek tragedies remained relevant as all of humanity

continues to live these dramas, relating it to Jung’s theory of the collective unconscious. Rothko

considered both literature and music as his main artistic inspirations, likening his paintings to

12
Thomas E. Crow and Glenn Phillips, Seeing Rothko (Los Angeles: Getty Research Institute,
2005), 101.
13
David Anfam, Mark Rothko: The Works on Canvas: Catalogue Raisonné (New Haven: Yale
University Press, 1998), 47.
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dramas, such as these ancient Greek tragedies.14 For instance, in the writings of Nietzsche, he

was particularly drawn to the dichotomy of Apollonian order and Dionysian chaos. Dionysus

relates to decadence and its consequential destruction, as seen in the apocalyptic symbolism of

the Chapel works; however, through accepting Dionysian wisdom of the inevitably of death, one

can commune with the infinite.15 Therefore, this understanding of Dionysus relates to the pure

experience of the sublime. According to his manuscripts, Rothko defined myth as “a symbol of

the notions of reality of a particular age,” allowing man to interact with the world around him.16

The underlying theme in classical tragedies and myths, Nietzsche’s literature, and the sublime

landscapes of the Romantics all confront the audience with the acceptance of their own mortality

and the shared, tragic human experience.

Mark Rothko’s abstract works began as colorful and serene, but as World War II wreaked

havoc with endless destruction and death, his palette becomes darker, almost apocalyptic. He

believed in the symbolic nature of color, hence the shift to the monochromatic and somber hues

as his life was becoming more problematic. His later works are nihilistic, reflecting the artist’s

depressed mood. In 1943, he asserted, “Only that subject matter is valid which is tragic and

timeless. That is why we profess spiritual kinship with primitive and archaic art.”17 Human

tragedy was Rothko’s main preoccupation, and his own personal tragedy also impacted his art.

Rothko was an anxious and withdrawn man, so he was conflicted when he eventually became

successful later in his career. Unfortunately, like many other artists, he was plagued by alcohol

14
Anfam, Mark Rothko: The Works on Canvas: Catalogue Raisonné, 31.
15
James E. Breslin, Mark Rothko: A Biography (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1993),
358.
16
Rothko, The Artist's Reality: Philosophies of Art, 82.
17
Waldman, Mark Rothko in New York, 20.
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abuse and depression, leading to his eventual suicide.18 Knowing these facts about Rothko’s

later life, it stands to reason that his canvases confront the viewers with much more gloomy and

morose sentiments. Throughout his long career, the two qualities that remain inherent in all of

Rothko’s abstract works are their emotionality and their link to spirituality.

By the last years of his life, he was almost solely working on large public commissions,

the most notable being the Rothko Chapel, his last project before his death. The Chapel was

commissioned by Dominique and John de Menil, Houston-based art collectors who have been

nicknamed the modern day Medicis due to their extensive collection of avant-garde art.

Dominique de Menil went to Mark Rothko’s Manhattan studio on April 17, 1964 to request a set

of paintings for a Catholic chapel being built for St. Thomas University.19 It seems ironic that a

Jewish man with such an orthodox upbringing would be put in charge of a Catholic institute;

however, the chapel would eventually become non-denominational since it was separated from

any association with the Univeristy. From the beginning, it was a challenge to reimagine the

sacred space in a secularized society; however, there are a couple other examples of modern art

fused with religious spaces. For instance, for dOCUMENTA in Kassel in 1959, artists created

paintings for a chapel dedicated to Holocaust victims.20 Rothko’s Chapel has also on multiple

occasions been compared to Henri Matisse’s Chapel of the Rosary, whose consecration was

actually attended by the de Menils in Vence, France.21 However, as opposed to these Christian

examples, the simpler design and plain façade is more reminiscent of a mosque or synagogue

18
Lee Seldes, The Legacy of Mark Rothko: Updated Edition (New York: DaCapo Press, 1996),
47.
19
Sheldon Nodelman, The Rothko Chapel Paintings: Origins, Structure, Meaning (Austin:
University of Texas Press, 1997), 33.
20
Ibid., 40.
21
Barnes and De Menil, The Rothko Chapel: An Act of Faith, 33.
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(Fig. 3). The architect for the project was originally Philip Johnson, but due to Rothko’s

extremely difficult and obsessive nature, Johnson eventually quit the project, granting Rothko

full artistic license. Rothko was so particular in fact that his assistant William Scharf built the

Manhattan studio to the proportions of the Chapel interior in order to get a true feel for the

space.22 The project would take almost five years to complete and drew inspirations from

multiple sources. Since Rothko was in total control of the design and the artworks, he was able

to build the Chapel specifically for his art, fostering a symbiotic relationship between

architecture and painting. He strongly believed the environment in which the paintings were

viewed had an impact, so he sought to create an entirely immersive experience for visitors.

In order to achieve this, Rothko endeavored to build a psychological atmosphere of

perfect symbiosis of visual art and architecture in which viewers could actively engage with his

massive canvases. He saw his paintings as sacred objects or talismans of sorts, hence they

required a place of reverence. Rothko was clear that his art should be shown alone, in a smaller

and simpler institution, as opposed to large museums that group everything together under one

roof.23 He was also adamant about the need for natural light when exhibiting his canvases,

which may have been influenced by Nietzsche’s idea of Urlicht, or primordial light, signifying

the sun as omnipotent.24 Unfortunately, this oculus design did not exactly pan out since it was

not taken into consideration how much harsher the Texan sunlight was as compared to the New

York City sunlight. The octagonal shape also added to the air of divinity since it strictly adhered

to the symmetry of sacred geometry. He borrowed this floor plan from early Christian Byzantine

churches. The last major design factor of the Chapel was the wall color, for Rothko was opposed

22
Breslin, Mark Rothko: A Biography, 467.
23
Nodelman, The Rothko Chapel Paintings: Origins, Structure, Meaning, 39.
24
Rosenblum, Modern Painting and the Northern Romantic Tradition: Friedrich to Rothko, 120.
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to white walls, believing they were too institutional. Howard Barnstone, an architect

collaborator, knew that Rothko required grey walls; however, he was undergoing

electroconvulsive therapy during the project, causing memory loss, hence the white walls now

present in the Chapel.25 Visiting the Chapel can be either isolating or communal, either filled

with personal introspection or connection to the greater cosmos. His paintings themselves were

meant as a type of correspondence since both their size and color relate to emotive symbolic

themes.

Given Rothko’s exposure to and research of artistic traditions, the Rothko Chapel was

derived from an amalgamation of historic sources. Mark Rothko traveled to Italy a handful of

times, and it is evident that some of the temples and Christian imagery would influence both the

scheme of the building as well as the artworks inside. The octagonal plan and trapezoidal apse

was derived from Byzantine churches while the oculus was a convention of classical temples

(Fig. 4). In 1959-60, only a few years before the commission, Rothko visited the Temples of

Hera, Athena, and Poseidon, proving he was drawn to these ancient structures.26 He likened his

own Chapel to these sacred spaces by founding a sort of artistic and religious pilgrimage site in

Houston. As for the paintings, Rothko was particularly inspired by Fra Angelico’s

contemplative works inside the San Marco monastery in Florence, whose main purpose was

peaceful prayer.27

As previously stated, Rothko was interested in dualities, and this theme comes back up in

his two main panels of the Chapel. These opposing panels echo the tension of The Last

Judgment (Fig. 5) and Madonna and Child (Fig. 6) the artist felt in San Maria Assunta at

25
Seldes, The Legacy of Mark Rothko: Updated Edition, 142.
26
Cohen-Solal, Mark Rothko: Toward the Light in the Chapel, 162.
27
Nodelman, The Rothko Chapel Paintings: Origins, Structure, Meaning, 302.
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Torcello, a Byzantine basilica church.28 In addition, his use of triptychs obviously reference

traditional Christian altarpieces and the Holy Trinity (Fig. 7). Furthering the Christian mythic

associations, the fourteen panels may symbolize the fourteen stations in the Passion of Christ.29

Rothko used all these churches and temples as prototypes to aid in shaping a meditative place for

the viewer to solemnly contemplate the artworks. Through drawing strong comparisons with all

these religious conventions, the artist instilled the Chapel with “sublime religious mystery.”30

By placing these artworks in a sacred building, he is emphasizing their spiritual importance and

connection to other religious traditions.

The Last Judgment (Fig. 5) in the Church at Torcello, both glorious and full of doom,

inspired Rothko’s menacing compositions as depictions of either an individual’s own mortality

or the final days of the entirety of mankind.31 Black, dark purples, maroons, and reds all

dominant the panels, slightly offset by some lighter pink hues. The juxtaposition of red and

black can be read as the fire of life versus the coldness of death, or the driving forces of Eros and

Thanatos. Although he had two assistants, Rothko painted the black himself using an egg-oil

emulsion, a medieval technique of tempera that was considered a symbol of fertility due to egg

symbolism.32 These predominantly dark canvases that permeate the Chapel reflect the

depression Rothko was battling at the time. In fact, the artist described the first few years of the

project as torment, demonstrating the notion of the tortured soul of the artist.33 In Christian

mythic terms, the dark tones can be seen as representational of the crucifixion while the

28
Barnes and De Menil, The Rothko Chapel: An Act of Faith, 67.
29
Nodelman, The Rothko Chapel Paintings: Origins, Structure, Meaning, 307.
30
Rosenblum, Modern Painting and the Northern Romantic Tradition: Friedrich to Rothko, 120.
31
Nodelman, The Rothko Chapel Paintings: Origins, Structure, Meaning, 9.
32
Barnes and De Menil, The Rothko Chapel: An Act of Faith, 61.
33
Breslin, Mark Rothko: A Biography, 469.
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contrasting highlights symbolize the resurrection, once again based in dualities. This focus on

tragedy may relate to the idea of sacrificial suffering in order to reach the divine. The dark

pictures seem to make reality melt away, summarized as, “Here we are nowhere and

everywhere.”34 This further emphasizes the theme of mortality and eschatology that seek to

transcend the corporeal and push the boundaries of reality. These spiritual abstractions were

meant to illuminate the Chapel and lend insight in the same manner that ancient illuminated

manuscripts did, imbuing his canvases with meaning.

The size of his panels alone are indicative of the sublime, forcing viewers to become

conscious of their size, therefore the space they occupy within the Chapel (Fig. 8). The

monumental panels also contrast the presence, as in the viewer’s presence within the canvas, and

the absence, as in the absence of any concrete representation.35 Although these paintings may

not be aesthetically beautiful or executed with clear technical skill, their massive size and

ominous colors still cause a strong reaction within the individual. He purposefully painted such

large canvases because he was aware of the deeper meaning inherent in the size. A small

painting pushes the viewer out of the picture, creating a degree of separation, and emphasizing

its quality as merely an art object. On the other hand, a larger painting would encapsulate the

viewer and draw them into the work. These pieces were so large in fact that they had to be lifted

into the Chapel through its roof.36 The initial perception of the immense artworks can be

overwhelming, but the final goal is full engagement. His paintings are at first “retrojective,”

pushing the viewer back to take in the whole painting, then “projective,” relaying their full

34
Barnes and De Menil, The Rothko Chapel: An Act of Faith, 8.
35
Anna Chave, Mark Rothko: Subjects in Abstraction (New Haven: Yale University Press,
1989), 181.
36
Main, "Rothko's Roots," 77.
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nature to the viewer and making them feel aggrandizing emotions.37 Viewers are invited into the

large canvases in order to experience their own epiphanies, making them transcendental in a

sense. Moving beyond the materiality of Rothko’s paintings is made easier by their size, since

they become more than an art object, and the viewer is able to derive their deeper meaning.

Mark Rothko made a bold move by agreeing to complete this project in a city such as

Houston, far-removed from the art center of New York, thus pushing the notion of the Chapel as

a pilgrimage site. This also limited the critical reception of the project, at least in the time

immediately following completion. Perhaps, he was drawn to this idea since Rothko remained

critical of art institutions, so this may have been a welcome reprieve. However, for those who

have ventured to the Chapel, it is such a stirring experience that it has even inspired poetry. For

example, Alice Friman records her visit in eloquent lyrical prose, describing how the panels

represent the Nothing, an abstract concept based on real feelings.38 Another visitor to the

Chapel, William Cain, commented at length on the unease he felt inside rather than the sublime

thrill he had been expecting.39 He perceived the project as Rothko’s critique of the history of art

in general, a “burial ground” for painting as symbolized by the void canvases.40 Since Rothko

was critical of the commercialized art world, this conclusion of Cain’s may not be entirely off

the mark. In Seeing Rothko, David Antin recounts his visit as anxiety-filled because he imagined

the empty black canvases as images of nuclear annihilation.41 The danger of nuclear destruction

was a real threat at the time of the completion due to the Cold War, and Antin was likely

37
Nodelman, The Rothko Chapel Paintings: Origins, Structure, Meaning, 299.
38
Alice Friman, "At the Rothko Chapel," Prairie Schooner 85.3 (2011), 48.
39
William Cain, "Learning Not to Look: A Visit to the Rothko Chapel" Southwest Review 94.2
(2009), 176.
40
Ibid., 180.
41
Crow and Phillips, Seeing Rothko, 132.
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reflecting on this political and social climate when he visited. I myself visited the Chapel last

October and found it to be an incredibly profound and peaceful experience as opposed to these

nervous contemplations. According to the guest book, in fact, the most frequently used word is

“peace.”42 It is completely silent inside, but a meditative type of silence, not one of unease. The

foyer provides various religious texts and holy scriptures to promote spiritual reflection. It is

easy to lose a sense of time when stepping into the Chapel, like losing touch with the reality of

the outside world.

As it is now stands, Rothko Chapel is not strictly a Catholic church as was originally

planned, but has been shaped into an ecumenical center that offers a holistic experience. After

his aneurysm, Mark Rothko began to suffer from depression, and unfortunately, Rothko

committed suicide in 1970 in what is believed to have been an impulsive decision.43 Afterwards,

the Chapel dedication occurred on February 27-28, 1971, rightfully attended by religious leaders

from various denominations and sects, as a convergence of Eastern and Western beliefs.44

Specifically in attendance were a rabbi, a Muslim imam, Protestant bishops, a Greek Orthodox

Bishop, a Zen Buddhist monk, and even a cardinal as a personal ambassador for the Pope.45 The

diversity of those present at the dedication strengthens the image of the Chapel as a universal

religion and spiritual institute. It has also functioned as a center for symposiums in order to bring

religious leaders together to discuss world issues, predominately humanitarian efforts (Fig. 9). In

continuance with Rothko’s belief with duality, the Chapel is both sacred temple as well as an

exchange of philosophical and ideological thoughts. There are photographs inside of the Dalai

42
Breslin, Mark Rothko: A Biography, 479-80.
43
Seldes, The Legacy of Mark Rothko: Updated Edition, 105.
44
Barnes and De Menil, The Rothko Chapel: An Act of Faith, 9.
45
Rosenblum, Modern Painting and the Northern Romantic Tradition: Friedrich to Rothko, 216.
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Lama, Nelson Mandela (Fig. 10), the Turkish whirling dervishes, among others participating in

events at the Chapel. Rothko’s life was dedicated to art and his attention to the identity of

mankind. The Chapel brings together his passions and ideals for others to have an emotional and

religious connection.
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Bibliography

Anfam, David. Mark Rothko: The Works on Canvas: Catalogue Raisonné. New Haven: Yale
University Press, 1998.

Ashton, Dore. About Rothko. New York: Oxford University Press, 1983.

Barnes, Susan J., and Dominique De Menil. The Rothko Chapel: An Act of Faith. Houston:
Rothko Chapel, 1989.

Breslin, James E. B. Mark Rothko: A Biography. Chicago: University of Chicago Press,


1993.

Cain, William. "Learning Not to Look: A Visit to the Rothko Chapel." Southwest
Review 94.2 (2009): 173-84. Southern Methodist University.

Chave, Anna. Mark Rothko: Subjects in Abstraction. New Haven: Yale University Press,
1989.

Cohen-Solal, Annie. Mark Rothko: Toward the Light in the Chapel. New Haven: Yale
University Press, 2015.

Crow, Thomas E., and Glenn Phillips. Seeing Rothko. Los Angeles: Getty Research Institute,
2005.

Friman, Alice. "At the Rothko Chapel." Prairie Schooner 85.3 (2011): 48-50.

Main, Carla. "Rothko's Roots." New Criterion 34.6 (2016): 74-77. Literature Resource
Center.

Nodelman, Sheldon. The Rothko Chapel Paintings: Origins, Structure, Meaning. Austin:
University of Texas Press, 1997.

Rosenblum, Robert. Modern Painting and the Northern Romantic Tradition: Friedrich to
Rothko. New York: Harper & Row, 1994.

Rothko, Mark. The Artist's Reality: Philosophies of Art. Ed. Christopher Rothko. New
Haven: Yale University Press, 2004.

Seldes, Lee. The Legacy of Mark Rothko: Updated Edition. New York: DaCapo Press, 1996.

Waldman, Diane. Mark Rothko in New York. New York: Guggenheim Museum, 1994.
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Fig. 1

Fig. 2
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Fig. 3

Fig. 4
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Fig. 5

Fig. 6
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Fig. 7

Fig. 8
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Fig. 9

Fig. 10