Object Image

The Eclipse was the last work Thomas created as part of her "Space" series. It was inspired by the total solar eclipse that occurred on March 7, 1970, and was visible from across the Eastern United States, including Washington, DC.

In a total eclipse, the moon blocks the view of the sun from Earth, appearing like a hole in the sky and allowing the sun's corona, usually masked by bright light, to become visible. With its dark blue core and radiating rings of color, Thomas's painting captures this rare moment of celestial alignment, its off-center composition suggesting the progressive movement of the moon across the sky.

Credit: Gift of the artist

1970
Acrylic on canvas
157.5 x 126.4cm
1978.40.3
Image and text: Smithsonian American Art Museum, 2024

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