I saw Alfred Molina as Mark Rothko in Red (a play by John Logan) at the Golden on 45th Street. It was very moving, intense. I thought Rothko’s work was a lot about light, luminosity–like Turner. But the play showed a different Rothko–troubled, haunted– crazily, ecstatically erudite–solipsistic.

“I’m not an abstractionist. I’m not interested in the relationship of color or form or anything else. I’m interested only in expressing basic human emotions: tragedy, ecstasy, doom, and so on.”

It has got me wondering what drove the making of those paintings–or any paintings by anyone, ever–and if Rothko’s pain is ancillary to our experience of his work.

It is a wonderful play.

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