Double Ziggurat



Katherine Mitchell, American, b. 1944


Double Ziggurat




22 x 30 in. (55.9 x 76.2 cm)

Object Number



Katherine Mitchell was born in Memphis, Tennessee in 1944. As a teenager she knew she wanted to be an artist, and hearing a lecture by Lamar Dodd inspired her to attend the University of Georgia. From there she moved to the Atlanta College of Art as a Ford Foundation Scholar and studied with (and later married) Ed Ross, the great advocate of Minimalism. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1968, and later earned a Master of Fine Arts in 1977 from Georgia State University. From 1985 until her retirement in 2009, she taught painting in the Visual Arts Program at Emory University.

While Mitchell's style has always been grounded in the abstract and geometric, her art has undergone a continual process of evolution as she incorporates new experiences into her work. Following an insight made while climbing the stairs of the Whitney Museum in New York in 1981, she began to base her paintings and drawings on architecture, often inspired by the buildings of antiquity. The Carlos Museum's lithograph Double Ziggurat of 1986 refers to the stepped pyramids of ancient Mesopotamia. Mitchell here constructs two half-pyramids, first, by conceiving each level as a series of square modules and then, filling in each level with black, gray, and terracotta bands stacked atop one another. The two ziggurats are almost mirror images, except for the additional black segments on the left, relieving potential monotony by varying the rhythm of color.
Signed by artist, lower right

Credit Line

Art History Department Fund


Style and Technique: Prints from the Collection of the Carlos Museum, Michael C. Carlos Museum, January 18 - May 4, 1997|
Artists in Georgia: Contemporary Works from the Collection, Michael C. Carlos Museum, February 6 - May 16, 2010
Georgia Masterpieces: Selected Works from Georgia's Museums (Atlanta: Georgia Council for the Arts, 2009), 61.


© Katherine Mitchell. Photo by Bruce M. White, 2009.
This image is provided by the Michael C. Carlos Museum of Emory University, who retains all rights in it. This image is made available for limited non-commercial, educational, and personal use only, or for fair use as defined by United States law. For all other uses, please contact the Michael C. Carlos Museum Office of Collections Services at +1(404) 727-4282 or Users must cite the author and source of the image as they would material from any printed work, but not in any way that implies endorsement of the user or the user's use of the image. Users may not remove any copyright, trademark, or other proprietary notices, including without limitation attribution information, credits, and copyright notices that have been placed on or near the image by the Museum. The Museum assumes no responsibility for royalties or fees claimed by the artist or third parties. The User agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Emory University, its Michael C. Carlos Museum, its agents, employees, faculty members, students and trustees from and against any and all claims, losses, actions, damages, expenses, and all other liabilities, including but not limited to attorney’s fees, directly or indirectly arising out of or resulting from its use of photographic images for which permission is granted hereunder.

On View



Katherine Mitchell, American, b. 1944, “Double Ziggurat,” Michael C. Carlos Museum Collections Online, accessed December 11, 2018,

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