Still Life with Three Puppies (1888) by Paul Gauguin

Still Life with Three Puppies - Gauguin, Paul - 1888 - 2

Artwork Information

TitleStill Life with Three Puppies
ArtistPaul Gauguin
MediumOil on Panel
Dimensions92.8 x 61.6 cm
Art MovementPost-Impressionism
Current LocationMuseum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York City, NY, US
Location Created France
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About Still Life with Three Puppies

Paul Gauguin’s “Still Life With Three Puppies,” painted in 1888, features a unique composition of three distinct zones. The first zone contains a still life of fruit, followed by a row of three blue goblets and apples in the second zone. Finally, the third zone showcases three puppies drinking from a large pan. This painting was created while Gauguin was living in Brittany among a group of experimental painters. He declared that “art is an abstraction” to be derived “from nature while dreaming before it.”

Gauguin’s style in this painting is distinct from Impressionism with its experimental use of color and Synthetist approach. He abandoned naturalistic depictions and colors, instead drawing inspiration from children’s books and Japanese prints. His incongruous scale and placement of objects on an upturned tabletop creates a disorienting composition that draws the viewer’s attention to each individual element.

Despite being recognized posthumously for his artistic contributions, Gauguin’s work has had an enduring influence on art history. His bold experimentation with color and form paved the way for movements such as Fauvism and Expressionism. In “Still Life With Three Puppies,” he creates a dynamic visual experience through his bold use of color, intricate details, and unique composition that invites viewers to approach art with an open mind.

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