Male and Female
Jackson Pollock, American, 1912 - 1956
In November 1943 this painting was included in Jackson Pollock's stunning solo exhibition at Art of This Century, the innovative New York art gallery run by legendary art patron Peggy Guggenheim. As its title suggests, the work depicts a male figure, embodied in the black columnar form at right, with its mysterious arithmetic graffiti, and a curvy female figure at left, with marvelous catlike eyelashes. Standing on tiny triangular feet, both figures are surrounded by splashed and smeared oil paint that enhances the sense of energy inherent in the two vertical forms, while also foreshadowing the famous "drip" technique that Pollock would develop later that decade.