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  • "Technically it’s a photograph. It’s a photograph because it’s photographic paper. But obviously I think about them as paintings, because they refer to the history of painting. I also have to think about them as sculptures, because every part of the process is part of the project. They’re sculptures because they play on the idea of what should be hanging in a gallery. In that sense they’re also kind of readymades."
    —Cory Arcangel

    Belonging to Cory Arcangel’s most recognizable and enduring series, Photoshop Gradient Demonstration, Photoshop CS: 84 by 66 inches. 300DPI, RGB, square pixels, default gradient "Blue, Red, Yellow", mousedown y=2300x=8600, mouseup y=2600x=8600, 2011 utilizes Photoshop to generate expressive color fields at the click of a mouse. The artist utilizes the software’s ubiquitous template to articulate pure visual tonality. Although printed on chromogenic paper, Arcangel thinks of his works as paintings, however their categorization as a kind of readymade further complicates their single definition as an art form.


    Arcangel’s color fields raise conceptual questions through their art historical references. In Photoshop CS: 84 by 66 inches, a plane of pure yellow is bisected by horizontal bands of red and blue. This palette of primary colors recalls the geometric forms characteristic of De Stijl abstraction, while the repeated distillation of color into form recalls Josef Albers’s color theory process. Also encompassed by Arcangel’s process in making these works is the pop art activation of mass production, as his titles contain instructions for the work’s reproduction within them. For instance, Photoshop CS: 84 by 66 inches. 300DPI, RGB, square pixels, default gradient "Blue, Red, Yellow", mousedown y=2300x=8600, mouseup y=2600x=8600 provides the Photoshop inputs with which to replicate Arcangel’s exact process and, thus, recreate the work.


    By offering his title as an instructional manual for mechanical reproduction, Arcangel raises questions of authorship, access, and value – topics ever more relevant in the digital art revolution happening today. The title serves as a humorous reference to the rapid obsolescence of electronic devices’ manuals, as well as a gesture to the democratization of contemporary art. 

    • Provenance

      Lisson Gallery, New York
      Private Collection, New York
      Phillips, New York, May 15, 2015, Lot 119
      Acquired at the above sale by the present owner

    • Exhibited

      London, Lisson Gallery, Corey Arcangel: Speakers Going Hammer, October 12–November 12, 2011


Photoshop CS: 84 by 66 inches. 300 DPI, RGB, square pixels, default gradient "Blue, Red, Yellow", mousedown y=2300 x=8600, mouseup y=2600 x=8600

chromogenic print mounted to Diasec, in artist's frame
print 84 x 66 in. (213.4 x 167.6 cm)
artist's frame 87 1/4 x 69 1/4 in. (221.6 x 175.9 cm)

Executed in 2011, this work is unique and is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity signed by the artist.

Full Cataloguing

$50,000 - 70,000 

Contact Specialist

Rebekah Bowling
Head of Day Sale, Afternoon Session
New York

1 212 940 1250
[email protected]


20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale, Afternoon Session

New York Auction 24 June 2021