The conception of Cubism
A convergence of influences – from Paul Cézanne and Henri Rousseau, to archaic and tribal art encouraged Picasso around 1906 to pursue the Cubist style in which he deconstructed the conventions of perspectival space that had dominated painting since the Renaissance. A defining separation from the restraints of the classical arts with a non imitative method of depicting the visual world was embraced by several artists in Paris. From 1907 to 1914, interaction and collaboration occurred between Picasso and Georges Braque where they explored and developed cubist concepts. They presented a new reality in paintings that depicted radically fragmented objects, whose several sides were seen simultaneously. Multi perspectives from a singular sight point were demonstrated in their art, creating a visual warping that sometimes challenged the viewer to decipher what form was being represented.
Cubism derived its name from remarks that were made by the painter Henri Matisse and the critic Louis Vauxcelles, who derisively described Braque’s 1908 work “Houses at L’Estaque” as composed of cubes.
These innovations would have far-reaching consequences for practically all of modern art, revolutionizing attitudes to the depiction of form in space. Picasso and Brancusi also adapted primitive art styles where the simple characteristics of an object were only depicted, leaving the viewer to fill in the gaps. The subconscious powers of intuitive perception were stimulated and encouraged.
Walrobinson – Pablo Picasso
Georges Braque ,”Trees at L’Estaque”, 1908
‘Head Of A Woman’– Pablo Picasso
‘My greatest artistic emotions were aroused when the sublime beauty of the sculptures created by anonymous artists in Africa was suddenly revealed to me’ Picasso told the poet Apollinaire. This sculpture is of his companion Fernande Olivier. Its flat, planed surface relates the work to his cubist paintings of the same period. Picasso made two plaster casts of the head, from which at least sixteen bronze examples were cast.
” You can never exhaust the richness of this head. It is like a mountain range, a landscape. It is transformed every time you move your own head, walk around it. — This is one of the seminal works of cubism, and in the state that Picasso liked it best. He moulded Fernande’s head in clay, then made two plaster casts from which he authorised a series of bronzes. He never liked the bronzes as much as this raw plaster version. It is a key work in the development of cubism because it was the first time Picasso realised he could translate his new kind of painting into three dimensions. This is one of his paintings from that time given solid form.” -(Jonathan Jones, Head of a woman, The Guardian)
The 50ft cubist sculpture in Chicago’s Daley Plaza by Picasso.
Picasso’s monumental cubist sculpture was regarded as radical in its early years as most public art in large cities were calm and stoic and mainly depicted historical figures. They also weren’t constructed entirely of steel. At the unveiling in 1967, Mayor Daley proclaimed “We dedicate this celebrated work this morning with the belief that what is strange to us today will be familiar tomorrow.” Picasso didn’t offer a name or meaning for his sculptural gift to Chicago, which probably added to the bewilderment. There was no rapturous applause at the unveiling but it went on to be a much loved icon in Chicago.
The quality of Picasso’s sculpture inspired other artists such as Alexander Calder, Marc Chagall, Joan Miró, Claes Oldenburg and Henry Moore. And expanded the acceptance of modern abstract art in public places.
Unveiling of the “Picasso” in Daley Plaza, Chicago
‘Mademoiselle Pogany I’ by Constantin Brancusi at the JB Speed Art Museum Louisville, KY
A Brancusi aphorism – Simplicity is not an object of art, but one achieves simplicity despite one’s self, by entering into the real sense of things.
Romanaian Brancusi arrived in Paris in 1904 and became an influence in contemporary sculpture. Brancusi used extremely simple shapes and forms to express the essence of a form, similar to primitive art.
” When you see a fish you don’t think of its scales, do you? You think of its speed, its floating, flashing body seen through the water… If I made fins and eyes and scales, I would arrest its movement. I want just the flash of its spirit. “
‘Bottle and Glass on a Table’ – Juan Gris
More representations of cubism in ceramics and sculpture :
“Hopscotch Woman” cubist female sculpture, bronze – Jim Bass – American, 20th Century
A Hopi-Tewa bowl with abstract geometric design, adapted from the ancient Sikyatki wares.
Pablo Picasso’s ‘Head of a Woman’
Abstract water carrier brass sculpture by Frederick Weinberg from his Zodiac Series.
Andile Dyalvane – One Off Pieces 2 from his Africasso series.
Henry Moore’s Reclining Woman: Elbow sculpture
The 7ft 3in long iconic bronze figure – completed in 1981 -being taken off its plinth to be loaned to the Rijksmuseum gallery in Amsterdam for a major exhibition of the artist’s work.
Charles Cotteau cubist vase.
Figural Cubist Studio Charger
Attributed to Polia Pillin
Vase painted by Chantal Roman Vals
Marcello Fantoni vase
Jacques Lipchitz “Song of the Vowels”
Andrea Gill earthenware vase
Joan Miro’s Moonbird sculpture
Henry Moore sculpture – Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Denmark
Mid-century Cubist Abstract Wall Sculpture – c1960-1970 – Unsigned
( Ruby Lane )
Wedgwood / Clarice Cliff cubist yo-yo Mondrian vase
Tony Laverick bowl
Modernistic Cubist Longwy charger
‘King and Queen’ outdoor sculpture – Henry Moore
Papuan Gulf Agiba
Ceramic cubist sculpture – Roger Capron, Vallauris
Joan Miro charger
Picasso esque ceramic wall panel
Two Heads One Hand, 1964, – Mark Chagall
Joseph CSAKY – Testa
Womans Face vase – Sweden
Pulley – Classic Venus – 2011
Roger Capron demoiselle
Sculpture Bernhard Heiliger
The Head – Port Veil, Barcelona
A large sculpture by American artist Roy Lichtenstein created in collaboration with sculptor Extremadura Rajado Diego Delgado.
It was completed in 1992 for the Olympic Games held in the same year in Barcelona . The statue is located on the waterfront at Maremagnumu.
Tolla- Another Existential Question
“Art is a lie that makes us realize the truth.” – Pablo Picasso
Square Head – Peter Hayes – Sculpt Gallery
“Flamingo,” a 54-foot tall red steel sculpture by Alexander Calder
Federal Building, Chicago, Illinois. USA
Large Songye, kifwebe mask
18 inch tall Vintage Cubist Art Pottery – unsigned
( ebay )
A sculpture by Henry Moore in the gardens of Dartington Hall in Devon, England
‘Woman Playing Mandolin’ – Picasso
‘Cubist Angel’ – Salvadore Dali
Copy of a head of a young girl by Henri Laurens, French sculptor.
Cubist Torso – Jim Ritchie
Art Deco cubist vase – Louis Dage
‘Flossie’ Camille Faure
Cubist garden sculpture by Romanian Christian Breazu