Joseph Albers

“In order to use color effectively it is necessary to recognize that color deceives continually.”



Artist and colour theorist Joseph Albers (1888-1976) taught art and design at the Bauhaus, Black Mountain College, NC and Yale University. Among other things, he is known for his book Interaction of Color (1963) in which he examines the complexity of colour and its deceptive powers. For example, the two small squares shown in each of these colour studies are the same shade. It is the colours placed around them that help to deceive the eye. 

Part of my freshman colour theory class at art school involved recreating a series of Albers’ famous studies with the use of Color Aid - a pack of 220 chalky smooth, silk screened sheets of coloured paper. It was the beginning of my fascination with colour and my original box of Color Aid is still a prized possession. 

Greyellowhite #8