In the early 1980s, American artist Brice Marden broke from his accomplished style and technique of monochrome painting to begin experimenting with new materials and new ways of making art. During this period he became fascinated with ceramics and painting from China and read work by Chinese poets, including the 8th-century hermit Cold Mountain (Han Shan). By the middle of the decade, inspired by forms of Chinese calligraphy, Marden had adapted the format of Han Shan's couplet poetry as a visual principle for his own art.
Curator Brenda Richardson explores the Cold Mountain works as a synthesis of the abstract and personal in Marden's development. This volume presents the complete series of works by Brice Marden, created between 1988 and 1992, in the context of its development through a series of sketchbook pages, drawings, etchings, and paintings.