Kenyon College

Etel Adnan


Adnan, Etel



You can become an (almost) instant artist if you follow these instructions (you can also become an artist otherwise!). Let’s try one of the infinite ways to start.

Wash your hands—it creates expectation. Take a white piece of paper, 1 by 1 meter. Find a good, sharp pencil— sharpen it if its point is dull. It’s always best to use good materials. With your pencil draw a grid—let’s say 9 little squares by 9 little squares, 81 squares in all, of equal size.

Take 10 crayons (oil pastels) that you have chosen out of a box. Think of the rainbow, its colors, its freshness. Let’s have 10 colors, for example red, purple, orange, yellow, dark blue, light blue, brown, ochre, dark green, light green. Keep them in this order (or any order you wish). Fill the first upper-left side little square with red, evenly painted red, carefully painted. Then purple for the next square, then orange, then yellow, then dark blue, then light blue, then brown, then ochre, then dark green, then light green. You will be at the end of your top row. Go back and start on the next line at the left side with light green, which will fall under the red square. Then continue: red, purple, orange, yellow, and so on until you fill in the last little square on the right of your bottom line, which will be red. You will obtain thus regular patterns, rhythm, brilliance, a nice painting. You won’t need special skills for such a beautiful result. Try it. You may—but I hope not—be weary in the process….

We’ll see.


Artist: Etel Adnan
Title of Work:
Year: 2012
Do it Installation Gund Gallery 2013

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