Philip Johnson and Mark Rothko, The Rothko Chapel, 1971, Houston, TX, Photo by Darren Milligan via Flickr, Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic License.

Make the Time: The Rothko Chapel

If you find yourself in Houston, TX, where there is a lot of great art to see, consider making the time to visit the Rothko Chapel

The famous modern architect Philip Johnson designed the octagonal building, but the building is referred to as the Rothko Chapel for the fourteen large, almost black purplish-red canvases by the Abstract Expressionist painter Mark Rothko that hang in the interior.  Rothko and Johnson worked in tandem on the project between the years 1964 and 1967 and the building, which was commissioned by John and Dominique de Menil, was dedicated on 1971.

The wide, austere interior space is open to people of every faith.

Rothko and Johnson intended it to be a place for reflection and a sanctuary for prayer.  The paintings, sometimes hanging three on a wall like a triptych, represent the mystery of the cosmos and the voice of God.  They are supposed to inspire a somber and meditative mood.

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