Fig. 90 Donald Sultan, Lemons, May 16, 1984, 1984. Latex, tar on vinyl tile over wood, 97 in. 971/2 in. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond. Gift of the Sydney and Frances Lewis Foundation.
Photo: Katherine Wetzel. © 1996 Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
e live in a physical world whose properties are familiar, and, together with line, space is one of the most familiar. It is all around us, all the time. We talk about “outer” space (the space outside our world) and “inner” space (the space inside our own minds). We cherish our own “space.” We give “space” to people or things that scare us. But in the twenty-first century, space has become an increasingly contested
issue. Since Einstein, we have come to recognize that the space in which we live is fluid. It takes place in time. We have developed new kinds of space as well— the space of mass media, the Internet, the computer screen, “virtual reality,” and cyberspace. All these new kinds of space result, as we shall see, in new media for artists. But first, we need to define some elementary concepts of shape and mass.
A World of Art, Sixth Edition, by Henry M. Sayre. Published by Prentice Hall. Copyright © 2010 by Pearson Education, Inc.
SHAPE AND TWO-DIMENSIONAL SPACE
A shape is flat. In mathematical terms, a shape is a two-dimensional area; that is, its boundaries can be measured in terms of height and width. A form, or mass, on the other hand, is a solid that occupies a three-dimensional volume. It must be measured in terms of height, width, and depth. Though mass also implies density and weight, in the simplest terms, the difference between shape and mass is the difference between a square and a cube, a circle and a sphere. Donald Sultan’s Lemons, May 16, 1984 (Fig. 90) is an image of three lemons overlapping in space, but it consists of a flat yellow shape on a black ground over 8 feet square. To create the image, Sultan covered vinyl composite