John Stephan

John Stephan, Disc #2 (1971), acrylic on canvas

Peyton Wright Gallery, 237 E. Palace Ave., 505-989-9888, peytonwright.com

Artist John Stephan (1906-1995) spent the last three decades of his career devoted exclusively to painting discs. In each painting, he set a large monochrome circle inside concentric rings of varying colors in a dynamic exploration of color relationships. In some, the center image seems to float; in others, it appears to radiate outward or recede. A landscape painter early in his life, Stephan rose to prominence after World War II and was a major influence on the development of abstract expressionism. He became part of a close-knit group that included Clyfford Still, Mark Rothko, and Barnett Newman. See numerous examples of his work on the gallery’s website, including the disc paintings and abstract compositions from the 1940s through 1960s.

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