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Meeting place: Rothko Chapel, Mark Rothko

With Meeting Place we present the wonderful collaboration of four artists in spaces dedicated to meditation, retreat and reflection: Henri Matisse at the The Rosary Chapel in Vence in the south of France; Mark Rothko at the Rothko Chapel in Houston, Texas; Miquel Barceló at the Chapel of the Holy Sacrament in the Cathedral of Palma de Mallorca and Ellsworth Kelly at the Austin Chapel in the Blanton Museum, Texas.

Mark Rothko (Daugavplis, 1903 – New York, 1970) is one of the most important artists of the 20th century and a major figure of Abstract Expressionism in America. Through his unique language; large surfaces with wide rectangular fields of colour with undefined lines suspended over monochrome back ground, he expressed the most basic universal emotions such as tragedy, the feeling of infinity and ecstasy.

In February 1960 Mark Rothko was commissioned by the collectors and patrons of the arts John and Dominique de Menil to produce some paintings for a chapel in Houston, Texas. The couple wanted to make a monument to modern art and a place of spiritual retreat. Rothko’s paintings, as John de Menil wrote, are pure color and through color transmit joy and a predisposition for meditation and concentration.
Within this commission, Rothko had the opportunity to create a space where to accommodate his paintings in a place of contemplation. Although, according to his doughter Kate Rothko Prizel, her father was not a religious person, but he had a strong spiritual feeling about art.

Misa en el interior de la Capilla, 1978 © David Crossley
A Time of Prayer, 1978 © David Crossley

The chapel, designed by the architects Philip Johnson, Howard Barnstone, Eugene Aubry with the 14 Rothko paintings, was meticulously conceived as a total work of art. The paintings and the proportion of the space is with the presence of the viewer what gives the meaning to this place.
Rothko Chapel is an ecumenical center where people of any background, religion, faith or belief can find a place to think and meditate. Mark Rothko spent his entire career searching for a universal language through his art. A language that could speak to the whole world. 80 thousand people who visit Rothko Chapel every year are the prove that this great and unique artist found that language.

Concierto hindú © Rothko Chapel
Indú concert © Rothko Chapel

To watch the video of Rothko Chapel | Click here