What Makes a Monochrome Painting Good

Alina Cohen, Artsy, March 5, 2018

It’s easy for museumgoers to make fun of monochrome paintings, since they offer the quintessential response to modern and contemporary art: “Couldn’t anyone do that?” To some viewers, the works simply require one paint can and lots of brushstrokes. Artist Richard Prince turned the genre into an actual joke when, in the late 1980s and early ‘90s, he silkscreened humorous text against single-hued backdrops. The artist’s “Monochromatic Jokes” made monochromatic paintings truly readable to any literate viewer.