In Cubism the artist used geometric shapes incorporated into abstract designs resulting in paintings that appear fragmented & abstracted. It is considered to be one of the most influential art movements of the C20th.
Proto-Cubism (Early Cubism) was a transition phase where the artists began experimenting with geometrization of form and reduced the colours in their palette as a reaction to Fauvism which was discussed in yesterday’s Blog. Here is Picasso's Les Demoiselles d'Avignon (1907) considered to be an example of this stage of his development and demonstrating the reduced palette.
Gleizes' influence extended to Germany to the Bauhaus, the most influential modernist art school of the C20th. Teaching here were the likes of the Expressionists Paul Klee & Wassily Kandinsky, artists we will meet later. Significantly, Gleizes spent four crucial years in New York, and played an important role in making America aware of modern art. From my reading, as I know nothing of American Cubism, I gather that the closest movement to this style was Precisionism which was called by some Cubist-Realism. I have referred to the work of Donald Bartlett Doe Cubism in America (Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery) 1985, to gain a better understanding of this subject. Doe speaks of the works of Charles Sheeler as seen here in Ballardvale and Stacks in Celebration.
Charles Demuth with Sail in Two Movements and the rather enigmatically titled My Egypt.
Precisionism for all accounts was the first indigenous modern art movement, emerging after WW1 and lasting until the early 1930s. As Doe said: In these paintings, the inherent geometry of colonial architecture or railyards and factories, or steamships and locomotives, were pared of detail and awarded a shimmering kind of clarity in sunlight often given the geometric
character of Cubist planes.
I think I have given you enough to think about today. I have just remembered the work of Max Weber and Mr Doe has introduced me to the work of Ralston Crawford another artist worthy of our consideration. We will look at their works another day. In terms of Picasso, Guernica (1937) was his most famous work done in the Cubism style. It's so complicated we will deal with it separately. And of course, I can hear many of you asking Did Cubism play a part in the development of Australian art? All will be revealed!
And speaking of being revealed, let’s take a break from Art Movements and look at art in a different way. We are going to study Humans as an Art Form. Is this me taking up the challenge of Looking at Nude paintings? Is this me trying to compete with Hannah Gadsby? You will have to wait until tomorrow!