Still life with horse’s head (1886; France) by Paul Gauguin

Still life with horse's head - Paul Gauguin - 1886; France

Artwork Information

TitleStill life with horse's head
ArtistPaul Gauguin
Date1886; France
Art MovementJaponism
Current LocationPrivate Collection

About Still life with horse's head

The artwork entitled “Still life with horse’s head” is a remarkable oil on canvas painting created by the artist Paul Gauguin in 1886 in France. This artwork is part of the Japonism art movement and is considered to be a still life genre piece. As of my knowledge cutoff, this artwork is held within a private collection.

The artwork depicts a still life composition that includes a horse’s head as its centerpiece. The painting combines elements of western and eastern aesthetics, indicative of the Japonism movement, which was influenced by Japanese art and design. Gauguin’s use of color and form simplifies and flattens the image, a characteristic feature of this movement. The background of the painting features organic patterns and perhaps elements that evoke Japanese prints, such as stylized nature motifs or elements of decoration. The horse’s head is rendered with attention to structural form yet with a degree of stylization that distances it from strict naturalism. Objects such as a book or newspaper can be seen as well, suggesting a contemplation of cultural artifacts alongside natural figures. The artwork’s color palette appears to play with contrasts and harmonies, creating a vibrant yet cohesive visual experience.

Overall, “Still life with horse’s head” is a fusion of western and eastern artistic traditions, yielding a composition that is both intriguing and evocative of the era in which Gauguin was exploring new artistic influences and contributing to the wider tapestry of modern art.

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