I want to fracture a moment of light before it goes away, up there.
– Rita Letendre
In the early 1970s, Rita Letendre’s cuneiform, or beamed-shaped, hard-edge paintings had already become her hallmark, and she would go on to develop an innovative airbrush painting technique. Reflections, produced in 1970, manifests clear-sightedness and a bold, frontal dexterity and sensitivity, as Letendre appeals to the same emotion as in her pieces of the 1960s, which she reinterprets here in a linear and geometric space. The vanishing point literally rests on the lower edge of the frame, suggesting a certain influence, or even a fertile shift into a parallel world. A companion piece to the acrylic on canvas Midnight Light (1970, Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec), Reflections invites the eye to sweep the entire pictorial space and to extend beyond the surface thanks to multiple ascending beams that mimic a fan or a peacock tail whose feathers stretch out in a quarter-circle. At the time, Letendre said that she “made lots of lines near the arrow to create a feeling of vibration, that must vibrate into space, the eternal space” (Nanibush and Uhlyarik, eds., Rita Letendre: Fire & Light, Art Gallery of Ontario, 2017).