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Ellsworth Kelly, Tiger, 1953, oil on canvas (five joined panels), National Gallery of Art, Washington, Gift of the Artist

Tiger, Kelly (Verbal Description)

This work was created while Kelly was working in France from 1948 to 1954—a period when he realized his first abstractions. This was the first time he used differently sized, individually crafted stretchers in one painting, lending special significance to this work of his early oeuvre. Kelly's abstract works are derived intuitively, even though they may appear to be based on mathematical formulae, such as the ratio of one panel to another or to the work as a whole.