Lightness is an aspect of abstraction that I particularly value. It is allied to the comic, which has been an important strand in art since the Baroque, and became dominant in the west in the early 19th. century. In its strict formulation, the comic means the treatment of ordinary people in preference to nobility and heroes. In modern times it means more the provocation of laughter, but that’s good too. Lightness in modern art is a feeling that doesn’t necessarily result in open laughter, but it loosens and refreshes in the same measure, and reminds us that the purpose of art is to give pleasure. I was taken with these thoughts many years ago when I first saw this photograph. However seriously theoretical
minimalism might be, it still has the lightness of valid modern art. The gray “cloud” floating in the upper right suggests that even the most remote figurative associations, an unbidden memory of nature, might enable such lightness in abstraction. In the case of these works, relative lack of physical weight also helps.