The illusion of space and motion through colour, and the deliberate ambiguity and contradiction between space, volume and plane relations characteristic of cubism and most abstract painting, go back at least to Cézanne, and even the impressionists. For Cézanne, colour was a primary instrument to evoke, and at the same time deny, space and volume; and in the ‘deliberate’ impressionism of Seurat and the ‘instinctive’ impressionism (to use Signac’s terms) of Monet and the others, the potentially kinetic power of colour was explored and engaged. Thus the new abstraction, represented by the work of Hinman, Poons and Williams, has its roots firmly planted in the viable soil of modern art.