Comparison: Arshile Gorky's "Enigmatic Combat" and Jackson Pollock's "Guardians of the Secret".
Among the permanent collection of artwork at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art hang two beautiful paintings. Arshile Gorky's "Enigmatic Combat" and Jackson Pollock's "Guardians of the Secret" are similar in only a few ways, yet the ways each artist decided to portray their scene through abstraction is worthy of comparison.
"Enigmatic Combat" was created by Arshile Gorky between 1936 and 1937. The media used for this piece is oil on canvas. Her piece is presented on a yellow wall along with a Picasso and Braque. Gorky uses very rough brush stokes and mostly solid colors without values or shading. Where she did decide to mix the colors they are only partially mixed. She used very earthy tones for the pallet of this piece. Most regions are filled with a brown, yellow, orange, or green color. Mostly all of the colored regions of this painting are outlined in a dominating thick black outline. Most of the earthy toned regions are crowded and centralized and surrounded by regions of white with hints of blue, grey, or purple. All the regions are organically shaped with rounded and pointed sides that share an outline of a bordering shape.
Farther into the collection is Jackson Pollock's "Guardians of the Secret" in a monstrous abstract expressionist painting. It was created in 1943 and measures 4 ft 3/4 in x 6 ft 3 in. It was hung on a light blue wall across from the Dali's and next to the Lam. It is the largest painting in the room. Like the Gorky, Pollock uses very rough brush stokes but his lines appear to be livelier and free flowing. Unlike the Gorky with the many defined shapes and regions, there a five main regions of "Guardians of the Secret": top, bottom, left, right, and center.
The regions of "Enigmatic combat" are centralized and radiate toward the boarders while in the Pollock piece there is the center rectangle region surrounded by the other four regions.