The Black Square.
1. Edward Wormley, side tables
2. Kazimir Malevich, 1914
3. Charles Ray, ink box, 1986
"When, in the year 1913, in my desperate attempt to free art from the ballast of objectivity, I took refuge in the square form and exhibited a picture which consisted of nothing more than a black square on a white field, the critics and, along with them, the public sighed, '
"Everything which we loved is lost. We are in a desert . . . . Before us is nothing but a black square on a white background!" . . . .
Even I was gripped by a kind of timidity bordering on fear when it came to leaving "the world of will and idea," in which I had lived and worked and in the reality of which I had believed. But a blissful sense of liberating nonobjectivity drew me forth into the "desert," where nothing is real except feeling . . . and so feeling became the substance of my life.
This was no "empty square" which I had exhibited but rather the feeling of nonobjectivity. . . . Suprematism is the rediscovery of pure art that, in the course of time, had become obscured by the accumulation of "things" . . . . The black square on the white field was the first form in which nonobjective feeling came to be expressed.
taken from here...