For Jasper Johns, the familiar objects and signs of everyday life are ideal subjects for art. It was a radical notion in the mid-1950s, when he and other young artists rejected the emotionally-charged gestural abstraction of the previous generation. Experimenting with mundane subjects such as flags, targets, maps, letters, and numerals, Johns discovered that these neutral motifs allowed the material surfaces of his works to assert themselves. In this early lithograph, Johns superimposes the numbers 0 through 9 in a single, semi-abstract composition. He depicts the numbers as tangible objects with no symbolic or mathematical meaning. For Johns, the meaning is in the making. Here, his crayon marks on the lithographic stone signify his physical actions and procedures over time.