Indefinite Divisibility (1942) by Yves Tanguy

Indefinite Divisibility - Yves Tanguy - 1942

Artwork Information

TitleIndefinite Divisibility
ArtistYves Tanguy
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions40 x 35 in. (101.6 x 88.9 cm)
Art MovementSurrealism
Current LocationAlbright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY, US

About Indefinite Divisibility

“Indefinite Divisibility,” a landscape painted by Yves Tanguy in 1942, is a surrealistic oil on canvas artwork that presents a dreamlike scene with a multifaceted composition. Measuring 40 by 35 inches (101.6 by 88.9 cm), this compelling painting is a part of the collection at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, NY, US. As a representative of the Surrealism movement, Tanguy’s painting plays with the subconscious and the extraordinary, drawing viewers into a world that defies conventional reality.

Upon examination of the artwork, one can observe a vast expanse of an open, tranquil sky that dominates the upper section of the canvas, offering a serene backdrop to the peculiar forms that inhabit the landscape below. The horizon line is subtle, almost blending with the sky, and creates a sense of infinite space which might be reflective of the title’s allusion to “indefinite divisibility.” The landscape itself is populated with abstract, biomorphic shapes, artistically arranged in a gravity-defying array that Tanguy is renowned for. These forms, while familiar in some aspects, are distorted and combined in ways that defy logical interpretation, invoking a sense of the uncanny and mysterious.

The organic and geometric elements seem meticulously placed within the composition, with elongated shadows casting an eerie effect, as if the strange structures are suspended in time and space. The color palette is somewhat muted, with soft blues and grays punctuated by bolder colors of reds and oranges, drawing attention to individual elements within the scene. These features contribute to a haunting yet intriguing visual experience that encourages the viewer to ponder the unseen depths of the human psyche and the enigma of the dream world that Tanguy evokes through his artwork.

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