Cubism 1907 – 1921

Term derived from a reference made to ‘geometric schemas and cubes’ by the critic Louis Vauxcelles in describing paintings exhibited in Paris by Georges Braque in November 1908; it is more generally applied not only to work of this period by Braque and Pablo Picasso but also to a range of art produced in France during the later 1900s, the 1910s and the early 1920s and to variants developed in other countries Although the term is not specifically applied to a style of architecture except in former Czechoslovakia, architects did share painters’ formal concerns regarding the conventions of representation and the dissolution of three-dimensional form Cubism cannot definitively be called either a style, the art of a specific group or even a movement It embraces widely disparate work; it applies to artists in different milieux; and it produced no agreed manifesto Yet, despite the difficulties of definition, it has been called the first and the most influential of all movements in 20th-century art

Cubism is an early-20th-century art movement which brought European painting and sculpture historically forward toward 20th century Modern art Cubism in its various forms inspired related movements in music, literature and architecture Cubism has been considered to be among the most influential art movements of the 20th century The term is broadly used in association with a wide variety of art produced in Paris (Montmartre, Montparnasse and Puteaux) during the 1910s and extending through the 1920s

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The movement was pioneered by Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso, joined by Andre Lhote, Jean Metzinger, Albert Gleizes, Robert Delaunay, Henri Le Fauconnier, Fernand Léger and Juan Gris One primary influence that led to Cubism was the representation of three-dimensional form in the late works of Paul Cézanne A retrospective of Cézanne’s paintings had been held at the Salon d’Automne of 1904, current works were displayed at the 1905 and 1906 Salon d’Automne, followed by two commemorative retrospectives after his death in 1907 In Cubist artwork, objects are analyzed, broken up and reassembled in an abstracted form—instead of depicting objects from a single viewpoint, the artist depicts the subject from a multitude of viewpoints to represent the subject in a greater context

The impact of Cubism was far-reaching and wide-ranging In other countries Futurism, Suprematism, Dada, Constructivism, De Stijl and Art Deco developed in response to Cubism Early Futurist paintings hold in common with Cubism the fusing of the past and the present, the representation of different views of the subject pictured at the same time, also called multiple perspective, simultaneity or multiplicity, while Constructivism was influenced by Picasso’s technique of constructing sculpture from separate elements Other common threads between these disparate movements include the faceting or simplification of geometric forms, and the association of mechanization and modern life