Violin and Glass (1918) by Juan Gris

Violin and Glass - Juan Gris - 1918

Artwork Information

TitleViolin and Glass
ArtistJuan Gris
Dimensions80.5 x 65.6 cm
Art MovementSynthetic Cubism

About Violin and Glass

The artwork “Violin and Glass” by Juan Gris was created in 1918 and exemplifies the Synthetic Cubist style. Executed in oil on canvas, the composition measures 80.5 by 65.6 centimeters and is classified within the still life genre. This piece is a testament to Gris’s contribution to early 20th-century avant-garde art, displaying his unique approach to breaking down objects into geometric forms and interlocking planes.

The artwork features a complex composition of abstracted shapes and forms that come together to suggest the presence of a violin and a glass, among other elements, upon closer examination. The palette comprises muted yet varied hues that contribute to a sense of depth and spatial ambiguity characteristic of Cubism. These colors are juxtaposed with sections of stark black and bright white, serving to delineate the fragmented components and contributing to a dynamic visual rhythm.

A careful interplay of light and shadow imbues the painting with a tangible sense of volume despite the flattening of space. The violin’s curves and the cylindrical shape of the glass are suggested rather than depicted realistically, inviting viewers to piece together the depicted objects from the overlapping and intersecting planes. Geometric patterns mimic the texture of wood and the surface of printed music, further bridging the gap between representation and abstraction.

Overall, this artwork embodies the innovative spirit of Synthetic Cubism, where the recombination of simplified elements and exploration of form take precedence over the mimetic depiction of reality.

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