Jean Cohen, Splot, 1987

Jean Cohen (1927-2013)
Lithograph on paper
12 3/4 x 9 3/4 in. (32.4 x 24.8cm)
The Mishkin Gallery
Gift of American Abstract Artists
Ed. 55/140

This black and white lithograph was made for the American Abstract Artists 50th Anniversary portfolio. It was also artist Jean Cohen’s 60th birthday. Jean Cohen was a member of New York’s American Abstract Artists, Tenth Street Artists Galleries, and the Area Gallery. After her second husband Bill Miller passed away, she moved from New York City to Long Island in 1987 where she continued to paint until she was 84.

Is this a big eye looking into the sky,
or a paint splat drop on the ground?
Light and shadow?
A heaven and an earth?
A sun and a moon?
A man or a woman?
Or is it Jean Cohen and Bill Miller?

I see this work as representative of Yin and Yang, an idea from Chinese Taoism.
Yin and Yang are opposite but related. One cannot exist without the other. Just like without the light, there’s no shadow. Without the vast empty space in the universe, the solar system has no place to be. Yin and Yang are contractive but alternating. One can find itself in the other. They complement each other, create each other, support each other and transform into each other.


Label by Jialu Tang, graduate student in the Arts Administration program at Baruch College.