Private Collection, Madrid
Reductive abstraction is the foundation of Zobel’s aesthetics. It is what he has settled into over the years, after the baroque colorisms of the 1950s and the black and white series of the early 1960s.
The calligraphic element is present as a hangover from the black and white paintings but the stained watercolor effect begins to assert its presence. It is an effect that has to do with transparency. By 1972, the year of this painting, Zobel’s work becomes even more abstract, even approaching non-objectivity, if we can interpret the picture as having no particular subject. The technique is as deceptively casual as the composition, down to the erratic line, in single scratches.
During the last few years in the 1970s, Zobel’s works have become increasingly paler in tone and clearer.