Acrylic No. 13 (Acrílico núm. 13)

* Nearly 20,000 images of artworks the museum believes to be in the public domain are available to download on this site. Other images may be protected by copyright and other intellectual property rights. By using any of these images you agree to LACMA's Terms of Use.

Acrylic No. 13 (Acrílico núm. 13)

New York, 1970
Acrylic on canvas
64 × 64 × 1 1/4 in. (162.56 × 162.56 × 3.18 cm)
Gift of Fanny Sanín (M.2014.220)
Not currently on public view

Curator Notes

Fanny Sanín is a New York-based abstract geometric painter who was born in Bogotá, Colombia.


Fanny Sanín is a New York-based abstract geometric painter who was born in Bogotá, Colombia. Two years after completing her degree in Fine Arts at the University of the Andes in 1960, Sanín traveled to Illinois to study printmaking and art history. She lived in Monterrey, Mexico, from 1963–1966, where she exhibited her work. From 1966–1969 she resided in London, studying printmaking at the Chelsea School of Art and Central School of Art. During this period, Sanín worked in an abstract expressionist style using oil paint. In 1968 she attended the exhibition Art of the Real in Paris (organized by MoMA). The exhibition solidified her commitment to work in an abstract style and initiated a period of transition during which she adopted acrylic paint as her preferred medium. Of her decision to abandon figural painting, Sanín noted: “Abstraction forced me to think of color and form independently of theme and figure. I felt I was creating, no longer copying as before.” Upon briefly returning to Monterrey in 1969, Sanín completed her first purely geometric paintings, and by 1970, just before permanently relocating to New York, she began her paintings of broad vertical bands—works characterized by their obsessive concern with formal precision and their unusual chromatic combinations.

Acrylic No. 13 is a meticulously crafted canvas that illustrates Sanín’s exploration of color as subject. In the work, Sanín juxtaposes three bands of rich navy between alternating chromatic pairs. Though the navy is consistent, its positioning between the variably warm and cool bands of color affects the viewer’s perception. The artist’s use of broad bands and pure intense color can be related to the formal experimentations of the New York-based artists Barnett Newman (1905–1970) and Ellsworth Kelly (b. 1923), who were highly regarded hard-edge and color field painters.

- JoAnna Reyes Walton, 2014