Ace of Clubs and Four of Diamonds (1912) by Juan Gris

Ace of Clubs and Four of Diamonds - Juan Gris - 1912

Artwork Information

TitleAce of Clubs and Four of Diamonds
ArtistJuan Gris
Dimensions30.48 x 16.51 cm
Art MovementCubism
Current LocationNational Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, US

About Ace of Clubs and Four of Diamonds

The artwork “Ace of Clubs and Four of Diamonds” is a notable example of Cubist art by Juan Gris, created in 1912. This oil painting measures 30.48 cm by 16.51 cm and exemplifies the still life genre within the avant-garde movement of Cubism. The piece is housed in the collection of the National Gallery of Art, located in Washington, DC, United States.

Analyzing the artwork, one can observe the fragmented forms and the use of multiple perspectives that are inherent to the Cubist aesthetic. It is composed mainly of geometric shapes and planes that intersect and overlap. The color palette is relatively muted but features occasional bursts of red and green, which add vibrancy to the composition. The objects depicted, most likely cards from a deck, are rendered in a way that they are almost abstracted, with the iconography of the suits still discernible amidst the angular and choppy renderings. This deconstruction of form and content is aimed to provoke the viewer into seeing the ordinary in an entirely new way, characteristic of Cubist principles which sought to break from the traditional single viewpoint. Gris’s adept handling of texture and pattern is also noteworthy, adding an additional layer of complexity to the composition.

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