Cubism: Picasso vs. African Sculpture

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Roderick Bright Professor Hutchinson Art Appreciation April 23, 2013 Cubism: Picasso vs. African sculpture Cubism is an early-20th-century avant-garde art movement pioneered by Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso. A primary influence that led to Cubism was the representation of three-dimensional form which were displayed in a retrospective at the 1907 Salon d'Automne. In Cubist artwork, objects are analyzed, broken up and reassembled in an abstracted form instead of depicting objects from one viewpoint, the artist depicts the subject from a multitude of viewpoints to represent the subject in a greater context. A style of painting Picasso developed along with Georges Braque using brownish and neutral colors. Both artists took apart objects and "analyzed" them in terms of their shapes. Picasso paintings at this time have many similarities to Braque. Synthetic cubism was a further development of the genre in 1912–1919. They cut paper fragments, often wallpaper or portions of newspaper pages were pasted into compositions, marking the first use of collage in fine art. Picasso’s African-influenced Period begins with the four figures in his painting, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon. He was inspired by African artifacts. Formal ideas developed during this period lead directly into the Cubist period that follows. Pablo Pacasso believed that the traditions of Western art had become exhausted and another remedy they applied to revitalize their work was to draw on the expressive energy of art from other cultures especially African art. However, they valued them superficially for their expressive style. They viewed them as subversive elements that could be used to attack and subsequently refresh the tired tradition of Western

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