Collection Online
glue, oil, synthetic polymer paint and resin on canvas
209.5 × 125.3 cm
Accession Number
International Painting
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Purchased through The Art Foundation of Victoria with the assistance of the Helen M. Schutt Trust, Governor, the Commonwealth Banking Corporation, Fellow and The Signet Group, Fellow, 1982
© 1998 Kate Rothko Prizel & Christopher Rothko / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/Licensed by Viscopy, 2011
Gallery location
Late 19th & early 20th Century Paintings & Decorative Arts Gallery
Level 2, NGV International

In Untitled (Red), with its brilliant colour chords, Rothko uses overlapping blocks of pigment that oscillate in constant motion, while the predominant hue – red – is elementally emotive. The emotional engagement with the viewer was central to Rothko’s art. As he told Selden Rodman, in an interview published in 1957, ‘I’m interested only in expressing basic human emotions – tragedy, ecstasy, doom and so on – the people who weep before my pictures are having the same religious experience I had when I painted them, and if you are moved only by their colour relationships, then you miss the point’.