Obscurity over Disappointment



Amateur color theorist Emily Vanderpoel (1842 - 1939) published her book Color Problems: a Practical Manual for the Lay Student of Color in 1902. Preceded by a historical encyclopedia of existing color theories  she ends her book with a series of mysterious color plates; grids of bright colors, at first glance apparent modernist abstractions, but as the enlisting below the grid reveals they are in fact  analyses of sorts.

Analyzing a variety of objects from her exotic private collection of artifacts, Vanderpoel created grid after grid in search of an underlying logic.

How her analysis took place, or what the method consisted of, remains to be obscure.