Still Life with Fruit Dish and Mandolin (1919) by Juan Gris

Still Life with Fruit Dish and Mandolin - Gris, Juan - 1919 - 2

Artwork Information

TitleStill Life with Fruit Dish and Mandolin
ArtistJuan Gris
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions92 x 65 cm
Art MovementSynthetic Cubism
Current LocationBeyeler Foundation, Riehen, Switzerland
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About Still Life with Fruit Dish and Mandolin

This text discusses three works on paper by the 20th-century Spanish painter, Juan Gris. By 1924, Gris had achieved considerable prominence both with the public and within avant-garde art circles. His reputation was further enhanced that year with the success of a lecture given by him titiled ‘On the Possibilities of Cubism’, which was published as a series of essays in newspapers around the world. The first work discussed is Pipe and Domino 1924 (T06812). This is an oil painting on cardboard depicting still life elements along side a domino and smoking pipe. Bowl of Fruit 1924 (T06813) depicts a classic still life composition with elements such as a bowl of fruit, jar, knife and carafe, while Still Life, Guitar and Carafe 1924 (T06815) is an oil painting on canvas depicting a group of objects including a guitar and carafe. All three paintings are significant in that they were created during Gris’ later period when his reputation had grown significantly in both commercial and fine arts circles.

The works are also notable for their color palette, line and design elements that reflect the influence of cubism & post cubism on Gris’ work during this period. By 1912, Gris had developed an iconic style known as Synthetic Cubism that combined broken color planes & abstract shapes – this style can be seen in his painting Still Life With Flowers (1912). This later period also saw him experimenting more with softer tones & lighter colors which can be seen in all three works discussed here. Overall, these three works exemplify what has made Juan Gris one of the most celebrated 20th century painters – his ability to fuse traditional composition techniques with modernist aesthetic principles to create unique works across various genres.

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