Jose Victoriano Gonzalez-Perez better known as Juan Gris (March 23, 1887 - May 11, 1927) was a Spanish painter and sculptor who lived and worked in France most of his life.
His works are closely connected to the emergence of an innovative artistic genre-Cubism.
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Born in Madrid, Gris studied mechanical drawing at the Escuela de Artes y Manufacturas in Madrid from 1902 to 1904, during which time he contributed drawings to local periodicals. From 1904 to 1905 he studied painting with the academic artist José Maria Carbonero
Today, marks his 125th birthday, and Google celebrates his birthday by presenting their commemorative doodler shown below:
Juan Gris is very famous in the art of Cubism. And here's some of Juan Gris remarkable works or art:
Cubism was the the first abstract art form and the most revolutionary art movement of the 20th century. It was originally conceived and developed in France by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque around 1907, but other artists soon adopted the style. The Spanish artist Juan Gris (his real name was José Victoriano González-Pérez), a friend and neighbor of Picasso in Paris, was the best of these and he refined the cubist vocabulary into his own instantly recognisable visual language.
Portrait of Picasso
1912; Oil on canvas, 93.4 x 74.3 cm; Collection of Mrs. and Mrs. Leigh Block, Art Institute of Chicago
Still Life with Violin and Glass
(oil on canvas, 1915)
Fogg Art Museum, Harvard
Still Life with Open Window, Rue Ravignan
(oil on canvas, 1915)
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Still life was the most popular of the cubist themes as it allowed artists to use everyday objects whose forms were still recognisable after they had been simplified and stylised. 'Still Life with Open Window, Rue Ravignan' is a great example of Gris' cubist style. It contains some of the traditional objects commonly associated with still life: a bowl of fruit, a bottle and a glass, a newspaper and a book, all carefully arranged on a table top at a balcony window. The objects are lit by electric light which contrasts with the moonlit scene outside the window. The subject may have been clichéd and predictable but its arrangement was revolutionary.
Juan Gris was more calculating than any other Cubist painter in the way he composed his pictures. Every element of a painting was considered with classical precision: line, shape, tone, colour and pattern were carefully refined to create an interlocking arrangement free from any unnecessary decoration or detail.
Gris flattens the composition of 'Rue Ravignan' into a grid of overlapping planes. Within the structure of this grid, he delicately balances and counterbalances different areas of the work. Sections shift from light to dark, positive to negative, monochrome to colour, transparency to opacity, and from lamplight inside the room to moonlight outside. The relationships of these juxtaposed elements leave us with a sense of the still life group in its surroundings - the kind of fragmented sense that our memory would retain had we seen them for ourselves.
Still Life with Pears and Grapes on a Table
(oil on canvas, 1913)
Burton Tremaine Collection, Meriden, CT
Before Cubism, all art obeyed the convention of perspective. This was the technique that artists had used since the Renaissance to arrange objects in space. However, perspective only works from one fixed viewpoint and the Cubists believed that it was a limited visualization technique which did not reflect the way that we see the world. Their aim was to develop a new way of seeing which reflected the complexity of the modern age. In Cubist painting artists depict real objects, but not from a fixed viewpoint as in perspective. They combine different viewpoints of a subject in the one image. The whole idea of space is rearranged – the front, back and sides of the subject become interchangeable elements. Cubist images combine the artist’s observation with their memory of the subject to create a poetic evocation of the theme.
Juan Gris' 'Still Life with Open Window, Rue Ravignan' is a classic example of the style which contains most of the visual characteristics of the Cubist technique.
To know more about Cubist Artist Juan Gris, you can visit these other great sites: