Man with a Hat (1912) by Pablo Picasso

Man with a Hat - Pablo Picasso - 1912

Artwork Information

TitleMan with a Hat
ArtistPablo Picasso
Dimensions62.2 x 47.3 cm
Art MovementSynthetic Cubism
Current LocationThe Museum of Modern Art, New York

About Man with a Hat

The artwork titled “Man with a Hat” is an exemplary work by Pablo Picasso, created in the year 1912. This portrait, executed using charcoal and collage on paper, reflects the artist’s engagement with Synthetic Cubism. Measuring 62.2 by 47.3 centimeters, it is preserved within the esteemed collection of The Museum of Modern Art in New York. As an art movement, Synthetic Cubism is characterized by the assembly of different elements and textures, which is evidently present in this artwork.

Upon examining the artwork, one observes the distinct fragmentation and geometric reconstruction of form typical of Cubism. The representation of the man is not traditional; instead, it is a study in the juxtaposition of shapes and the use of paper collage to create a complex spatial structure. Picasso breaks the human figure into planes and uses the collage technique to add texture and depth, distinguishing it from more conventional portraits. The amalgamation of diverse materials also speaks to the synthetic aspect of this phase of Cubism, where the focus is on composition rather than deconstructing objects into their component parts.

The composition utilizes a restrained color palette, mainly comprising shades of blue and brown, alongside the monochromatic tone of the charcoal. The man’s face is a focal point, and while it adheres to the cubist ideology of portraying subjects from multiple viewpoints, there remains a semblance of human features amidst the abstraction. As with many of Picasso’s works from this period, the artwork encourages viewers to reconsider the very nature of depiction and challenges traditional perceptions of portraiture.

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