From the spring of 1968, nothing goes right for Mark Rothko, sick, drinker, smoker, irritable, almost impotent. His wife leaves him on 1969 new year's day. He paints small canvases dominated by gray and black expressing his new pessimistic feeling of the meaning of life.
Yet at the beginning of 1970, this highly important colorist lives a sort of restart. One of the three oils on canvas painted in this very short period, 173 x 137 cm, is estimated at $ 15M for sale by Sotheby's in New York on November 10, lot 6.
This strange work is typical of his compositions but expresses the thrill of nightfall by three large dark green regions on an indigo background. It is his artistic testament, the invasion of his despair and his ultimate effort to stage a large-scale scenery.
Rothko sliced his arms with a razor on February 25, 1970.