The Green Christ (1889) by Paul Gauguin

The Green Christ - Paul Gauguin - 1889

Artwork Information

TitleThe Green Christ
ArtistPaul Gauguin
Dimensions92 x 73 cm
Art MovementSymbolism,Synthetism
Current LocationRoyal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp, Belgium

About The Green Christ

“The Green Christ” is an artwork created by the artist Paul Gauguin in 1889, belonging to the Symbolism and Synthetism movements. The work is a religious painting with the dimensions of 92 by 73 centimeters. Currently, it is housed in the Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp, Belgium.

The artwork presents a vividly colored scene featuring a figure resembling Christ on the cross, albeit rendered in a green hue, which gives the painting its name. This figure dominates the central part of the composition, with a tree trunk serving as the cross. The crucifixion is represented in a non-traditional manner, reflecting Gauguin’s innovative style that breaks away from classical depictions. Around the central figure, there are Breton women portrayed in traditional clothing, suggesting the scene is set in Brittany, a region Gauguin frequently visited and where he drew substantial inspiration for his work. Each woman exhibits a different reaction to the scene, ranging from contemplation to apparent sorrow. Their faces and postures are stylized, resonant with the Symbolist intent to convey ideas and emotions over realistic representation.

The background is marked by a hilly landscape that descends to a seashore, divided into areas of bright and muted colors, crafting a contrast that is typical of Synthetist technique. Gauguin employs bold outlines and flat areas of color, presenting an almost dreamlike vision of the landscape, which complements the solemnity of the religious theme.

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