Despite its sculptural materials, Nickel considered this piece to be a painting because the arrangement of the strings mimicked his painting technique at the time. The wood frame is made of paint-encrusted nailer strips used in the stringing process for the larger spray paintings. Nickel made the piece during his transition from snapping strings to using strings as templates or stencils for spray painting. The glass mimicked his studio windows and by reflecting objects in the studio, an allusion to the “see-through” concept of his paintings.

String Painting

1973
Brentwood, Missouri
Wood, nails, string, glass
H: 40 in. x W: 46 in. x D: 2 in.

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