By the mid-1960s, Barnett Newman's difficulties of the previous decade were
over. The "cool" look of the Minimalist and Pop art of the sixties
had opened the public's eyes to his spare yet powerful paintings. Amid this
fresh appreciation, Newman continued to evolve as an artist. This is the period
in which he adopted the word "zip" to describe the vertical bands in
his canvases. He downplayed the contemplative element of his art, and gave his
paintings hard edges and smooth surfaces that deemphasize the artist's touch.
Working with paint straight out of the tube, Newman created bold paintings in
primary colors, using the newly popular medium of acrylic paint to full
advantage as he strove for even, saturated coats of color. This approach is
exemplified by the magnitude and intensity of red in the largest painting of
his life, Anna's Light (named for the artist's mother). Newman also
experimented with new shapes, painting Chartres and Jericho on
triangular canvases that were inspired by the preparation of the pyramidal
base for his sculpture Broken Obelisk.