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The Cover
January 21, 2009


JAMA. 2009;301(3):252. doi:10.1001/jama.2008.787

Watching (cover) is one of a series of “pictograph paintings” by American artist Adolph Gottlieb (1903-1974). At first glance, the painting looks as though it might be a hieroglyphic text with a hidden message. It has even been suggested that with careful study, Gottlieb's pictograph paintings could be decoded. But Gottlieb's intention was to go beyond conscious communication. He wanted his pictographs to resonate at an unconscious level. His vision for symbolic communication through art evolved from a long process of experimentation with intuitively created forms and their arrangement in a defined space.