PAE: $1,542,410-$2,313,610
Bridget Riley, Rill
Bridget Riley, Rill, signed and dated 'Riley '76' on the turnover edge; signed, titled and dated 'Riley "Rill" 1976' on the reverse; further signed, titled and dated 'Riley "Rill" 1976' on the stretcher, acrylic on linen, 228 x 96.2 cm (89 3/4 x 37 7/8 in.), Painted in 1976, this work will be included in the forthcoming complete catalogue of paintings which is being prepared by the Bridget Riley Archive. © Images are copyright of their respective owners, assignees or others.

Bridget Riley (b. 1931) is a British painter known for her involvement in the Op Art movement. Op Art (Optical Art) refers to painting and sculpture that interferes with the viewer’s normal perceptual process. One’s eyes are forced to continually move across the surface(s) of a work, following the movement suggested in the work itself, via a program of chromatic vibration, color contrasts, sharp lines, reversible perspective, among other phenomena. Through MoMA’s 1965 exhibition “The Responsive Eye”, the term Op Art was popularized, although its roots can be traced to the work of Victor Vasarely beginning in the 1950s, as well as the work of the Pointillists, Futurists, and Abstract Expressionists. Bridget Riley was one of the artists celebrated in MoMA’s 1965 exhibition. Her work began in the early 1960s when she created pieces exploring the disorienting effects of black and white arrangements as seen in “Movement in Squares”, 1961, “Blaze 2” and “Fall”, both 1963. These works seize the attention and gaze of the viewer through their illusionary play and make evident, in the mind of that viewer, a process of immersion and deflection. One is made completely aware of the act of looking and these early examples often hurt the viewer’s eyes as a result. Primarily a perceptual experience, rather than an intellectual or conceptual one, it is easy to see how these techniques quickly permeated fashion and inspired the psychedelic culture of the 1960s. Riley remarks: “I want my paintings to exist on their own terms. That is to say they must stealthily engage and disarm you. There the paintings hang, deceptively simple – telling no tales as it were – resisting, in a well-behaved way, all attempts to be questioned, probed or stared at and then, for those with open eyes, serenely disclosing some intimations of the splendours to which pure sight alone has the key.” Her investigation into the experience of vision expanded to works of color, beginning in 1967. Referred to as her “Stripe Paintings” these pictures continue to present day and can be viewed as a continuation and expansion of the work of Josef Albers’ studies of the interaction of colors. She has created her own unique blend of geometrical abstraction, using the lozenge, as seen in “Delos”, 1983 and “In Attendance” 1994, which lasted until 1997. Riley soon merged these shapes with curved forms (see Reve, 1999 and Evoe, 2003). Since the late 1990’s she uses scale to incredible effect in works from her “Composition with Circles” wall drawing series. The artist lives and works in London and is represented by Karsten Schubert in London, Pace Gallery in New York, David Zwirner, Max Hezler in Berlin, and Green on Red Gallery in Dublin. See also Victor Vasarely, Josef Albers, Richard Anuszkiewicz, Yaacov Agam, Carlos Cruz-Diez, Francois Morellet, Julio Le Parc, Kenneth Noland, and Larry Poons.

Video: Bridget Riley's circles run rings around us at the National Gallery. From: Adrian Searle of The Guardian