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The Cover
October 21, 1998

Berkeley No. 8

Author Affiliations

Edited by M. Therese Southgate, MD, Senior Contributing Editor.

JAMA. 1998;280(15):1292. doi:10.1001/jama.280.15.1292

Computers, like abstract art, speak a new language. Often overwhelming and sometimes unintelligible, the language, once mastered, is as exciting and rewarding as crossing a great river; enrichment may be found on the other side.

For Richard Diebenkorn (1922-1993), mastering the language of abstract expressionism allowed him to fully express his artistic vision. For most of his life, Diebenkorn struggled to express emotion and movement through the very elements of the painting—texture, color, form, light, and darkness—without the "baggage" of traditional representational symbols, such as human figures or buildings. Diebenkorn also felt an "ethical obligation" to create pure art. And, in fact, Diebenkorn disliked his work being classified as anything other than abstract.

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