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Home / Exhibits / Color Wonder from the CMA Collection (November 25, 2022 - April 9, 2023)

Color Wonder from the CMA Collection (November 25, 2022 - April 9, 2023)

Dive into a rainbow of color and immerse yourself in a color experience with Color Wonder from the CMA Collection. Everywhere you look, color holds meaning. It evokes emotion, describes ideas, indicates status, conveys symbolism, and provides disguise. Discover the role of color in art and the many ways it affects us in Color Wonder, and see for yourself just how powerful colors can be. 



When you feel colors, you will understand the why of their forms.The Poor Farm

-Oscar Bluemner

The Poor Farm















Artists invented the first pigments as early as 40,000 years ago, creating a basic palette of five colors: red, yellow, brown, black, and white. Since then, the history of color has been one of constant discovery, and today, there are universal associations that people make with colors, and infinite ways to understand them. These meanings are often personal, based on past experiences and traditions. 


Color also has a direct impact on psychology and how we perceive emotions. We often infuse color into our language, and we are taught standard color associations that help relate color to our emotions, such as blue meaning sadness, green meaning envy, and yellow meaning happiness. We encounter these color associations everyday, which subconsciously impact our daily choices and emotions. Artists use color not only to create mood, balance, and harmony, but also to convey how they are feeling, and how they would like the viewer to feel as well. Artists might use shades of blue or purples to convey sadness or serenity, shades of oranges and reds to convey energy and life, or they might use a combination of colors to convey chaos and disarray. 




I like to feel that my work is adding perhaps a bit of color to the world. y why worry (from circus alphabet)

-Corita Kent

y why worry
















In Color Wonder, make your way through the color spectrum and experience some of the brightest and boldest examples from our collection. In this exhibition, you'll learn to decode the messages that different colors send in art. Discover the wonder of color.



Walking under the trees, I felt as if the color made sound.September Afterglow

- Charles E. Burchfield


















To view the works in this exhibit, click here.


Did you know? CMA's collection includes over 1500 works of art.  View CMA's entire collection here.








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