Painting - Equal Triangles

In this painting, based on his own construction, Crockett Johnson continued his exploration of rectilinear figures that could be made with a ruler and compass, assuming that one could construct a square of area equal to pi (e.g. if one could square the circle). More specifically, he assumed that he could construct a square of that area (the square in blue and dark blue in the painting) and found four triangles, also shown in shades of blue, that would be of equal area. A sheet from his papers presents his argument (1979.3083.04.02)
The oil painting on masonite is #86 in the series. It is signed on the back: EQUAL TRIANGLES (/) Crockett Johnson 1972. There is a wood and chrome frame.
Currently not on view
Object Name
date made
Johnson, Crockett
Physical Description
masonite (substrate material)
wood (frame material)
metal (frame material)
overall: 71.7 cm x 64 cm x 3.5 cm; 28 1/4 in x 25 3/16 in x 1 3/8 in
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Science & Mathematics
Crockett Johnson
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Crockett Johnson
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Ruth Krauss in memory of Crockett Johnson
Additional Media

Visitor Comments

Add a comment about this object

Submit a comment or ask a question about this object using the form below. Submissions are moderated and may receive a curator response. Please note that we cannot evaluate or appraise your personal artifacts. For other questions or general inquiries please visit our FAQ or contact page.

Personal information will not be shared or result in unsolicited e-mail. See our privacy policy.

Enter the characters shown in the image.