Jasper Johns
Jasper Johns, Jr. (born May 15, 1930) is an American contemporary artist who works primarily in painting and printmaking
Printmaking is the process of making artworks by printing, normally on paper. Printmaking normally covers only the process of creating prints with an element of originality, rather than just being a photographic reproduction of a painting. Except in the case of monotyping, the process is capable...

Born in Augusta, Georgia
Augusta, Georgia
Augusta is a consolidated city in the U.S. state of Georgia, located along the Savannah River. As of the 2010 census, the Augusta–Richmond County population was 195,844 not counting the unconsolidated cities of Hephzibah and Blythe.Augusta is the principal city of the Augusta-Richmond County...

, Jasper Johns spent his early life in Allendale, South Carolina
Allendale, South Carolina
Allendale is a town in Allendale County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 4,052 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Allendale County.-Geography:...

 with his paternal grandparents after his parents' marriage failed. He then spent a year living with his mother in Columbia, South Carolina
Columbia, South Carolina
Columbia is the state capital and largest city in the U.S. state of South Carolina. The population was 129,272 according to the 2010 census. Columbia is the county seat of Richland County, but a portion of the city extends into neighboring Lexington County. The city is the center of a metropolitan...

 and thereafter he spent several years living with his aunt Gladys in Lake Murray, South Carolina, twenty-two miles from Columbia.

I make what it pleases me to make.. ..I have no ideas about what the paintings imply about the world. I don’t think that’s a painter’s business. He just paints paintings without a conscious reason. I intuitively paint flags.

Trend to the Anti-Art: Targets and Flags, Newsweek 51 no. 13, March 1958, p. 96

(to see the painting)..as an object, as a real thing in itself. (on his Flag-paintings)

Abstract Art, Anna Moszynska, Thames and Hudson 1990, p. 200

I made the flags and targets to open men’s eyes.. ..(they) were both things - which are seen and not looked at - examined. (on his flag-paintings, 1958)

his own comment on his exhibition of the 'Flag, Target and Number' paintings in 1958

The relationship between the object & the event. Can they 2 be separated? Is one a detail of the other? What is the meeting? Air?

Book A (sketchbook), p 8, c 1960: as quoted in Jasper Johns, Writings, sketchbook Notes, Interviews, ed. Kirk Varnedoe, Moma New York, 1996, p. 49

Make something, a kind of object, which as it changes or falls apart (dies as it were) or increases in its parts (grows as it were) offers no clue as to what its state or form or nature was at any previous time. Physical and Metaphysical. Obstinacy. Could this be a useful object?

Book A (sketchbook), p 9, c 1960: as quoted in Jasper Johns, Writings, sketchbook Notes, Interviews, ed. Kirk Varnedoe, Moma New York, 1996, p. 50

I’m especially interested in the music of John Cage.. ..I would like to do some experimenting with the relationship between his freeform sound and free-form art.

John Adds Plaster Casts To Focus Target Paintings, Donald Key, Milwaukee Journal, 19 June 1960, pt. 5, p. 6

Sometimes I see it and then paint it. Other times I paint it and then see it. Both are impure situations, and I prefer neither. At every point in nature there is something to see. My work contains similar possibilities for the changing focus of the eye.

Sixteen Americans, Dorothy C. Miller, Moma, New York, p. 22