The Dice (1922) by Juan Gris

The Dice - Juan Gris - 1922

Artwork Information

TitleThe Dice
ArtistJuan Gris
Art MovementSynthetic Cubism
Current LocationGeorges Pompidou Center, Paris, France

About The Dice

Entitled “The Dice,” this oil on canvas still life is the work of Spanish artist Juan Gris from 1922. The artwork is an exemplary piece of Synthetic Cubism, a movement co-founded by Gris, which was characterized by more texture and color than its analytic predecessor. The painting currently resides within the collection of the Georges Pompidou Center in Paris, France.

The artwork depicts a composition that harkens to the nature of Synthetic Cubism, where objects are broken down into flat planes of color and then reassembled in an abstracted form on the canvas. In “The Dice,” one can discern the eponymous dice near the bottom right corner, as well as fragments of text and other objects that suggest the presence of newspapers or printed material and a glass on a table. The color scheme is relatively muted, with browns, grays, and whites predominating, punctuated with highlights of brighter yellow and subtle touches of other hues. The assembly of shapes and text create a sort of visual collage that plays with perspective, depth, and form.

The use of text elements, such as the letters “LE” from the French article “le,” might reference contemporary culture or publications of the time. Overall, the still life subtly challenges the viewer’s perception and encourages contemplation of the objects’ interrelations, their geometric abstraction, and the painting’s overall compositional harmony.

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