Satenig Avedisian, Watertown, Massachusetts

(on loan to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

Michael and Florence [Avedisian] Berberian, Medfield, Massachusetts, by descent

Dr. Bruce M. Berberian, Harlington, Texas, by descent


Arshile Gorky Catalogue Raisonne, No. D1306 (illus)



University Art Museum, University of Texas, Austin, Arshile Gorky: Drawings to Paintings, 1975, catalogue p. 64, illustrated

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Arshile Gorky, 1904-1948: A Retrospective, 1981, catalogue by Diane Waldman, No. 215, p. 233 (Illus)


The 1940s was a period of frenetic activity for Gorky, “painting as one possessed”, experimenting with “a variety of techniques and formal possibilities…Gorky turns once again to the example of Miro, highlighting shape with a line of contrasting color, blending one color area into another, dissolving solid surfaces into transparent veils with overlays of line. The power and poetry of Gorky’s drawing, however, far surpasses the expressiveness of Miro’s line…His forms are not bounded but, rather, are amorphous entities, linked to one another and always flowing in and out of a yielding, complex, ambiguous spatial continuum” (Diane Waldman, Arshile Gorky, Guggenheim Museum, 1981, p. 58).  The present drawing was likely among those done in the summer of 1946, following the disastrous studio fire at the beginning of the year, at a time when Gorky was consumed with an urgency to continue creating as many of his marvelous, enigmatic, surrealist-abstract compositions as he could.  Many of the drawings were done in the fields around the family’s farmhouse in Virginia and have allusions to nature, always an integral part of Gorky’s art.

Arshile Gorky (1904-1948)
Untitled, ca. 1946

Pencil and pastel on paper
24 1/8 x 18 3/4 in., (61 x 48 cm)