By 1962, Philip Guston was considered one of the most important artists of his generation and a master of Abstract Expressionism. Between 1962 and 1965, Guston worked on his last important body of abstract painting. In them, the artist began to allow elements of figuration to creep in. The Scale is an excellent, large-scale example from this series of work. Writing about this period in a review of the current Philip Guston traveling retrospective, Michael Kimmelman stated, "The next decade, leading up to the late work, is Guston's most underrated and revelatory. Full of grays and black, skittering, searching squiggles approximating grids, these soulful abstractions search out shapes they can't yet define. They have the rough, barely muffled anger of raised voices approaching from the other side of a closed door" (M. Kimmelman, "Art Review; Anxious Liberator of an Era's Demons," New York Times, October 31, 2003, p. E37).