Investigating colour problems with Emily Noyes Vanderpoel.

Emily Noyes Vanderpoel at home (www.sacredbonesrecords.com/collections/emily-noyes-vanderpoel)

Emily Noyes Vanderpoel (1842-1939) is a largely overlooked artist and writer. Her first book Color Problems, A Practical Manual for the Lay Student of Color was first published in 1901. It contained beautiful diagrams to describe the science of colour theory, and charted objects she deconstructed using colour analysis.

Plate LXXVI Colour Analysis from Spanish Embroidery (from Noyes Vanderpoel, E., (2018). Color Problems, A Practical Manual for the Lay Student of Color. New York: The Circadian Press with Sacred Bones Books).
Plate XCVII Colour Analysis from a Chinese “Eggshell” Plate (from Noyes Vanderpoel, E., (2018). Color Problems, A Practical Manual for the Lay Student of Color. New York: The Circadian Press with Sacred Bones Books).

She deployed ‘the Grid’ long before it became a stage for formalism.  I am interested in her forgotten voice and her early use of the grid as a method of studying colour as visual language. The extent of her influence on early modernist aesthetics is unknown and the reprinting of her first book by The Circadian Press with Sacred Bones Books is an attempt to instate Vanderpoel as a visionary who influenced minimalism and formalism.

Plate XC Colour Analysis from Japanese Cloisonné Vase (from Noyes Vanderpoel, E., (2018). Color Problems, A Practical Manual for the Lay Student of Color. New York: The Circadian Press with Sacred Bones Books.)

Vanderpoel used a grid of one hundred squares to analyse the colour of objects. Inspired by her method of charting colour and my interest in drawing in 8 bit I am interested in making some colour analyses in grids of 64 squares, 8 by 8..

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