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Cubism painting: a revolution in the world of painting

Cubism painting: a revolution in the world of painting

Cubism painting is a revolutionary style in the world of painting that emerged in the early 20th century. This new style, rejecting the traditions of realism, was looking for a new way to represent reality to the extent that cubist artists, instead of merely representing objects, analyzed and reconstructed them in the form of simple geometric shapes.

This style is known as one of the most influential modern art movements, which, by mixing the traditions of realism and perspective, presented a new perspective to the art world, which was based on the geometric analysis of objects and the combination of different viewing angles for the audience.

Cubism is considered one of the most fundamental art movements of the 20th century, and many famous works of art of this period are attributed to this movement. The main characteristic of cubism is the brokenness and disintegration of the visible object in the painting, and the cubist artists sought to show different parts of an object from different angles and in a more geometrical way on the canvas.

The following video introduces cubism and paintings of this style

In Cubism painting, new methods are used such as showing an object from its different dimensions but on a two-dimensional level of painting, putting together different shapes and objects, and using happy and varied colors as prominent features. became. This movement especially emphasized the visual structure and form of the image and abandoned the realistic representation for unrealistic and illogical combinations of objects in the painting.

In general, cubism represented an attempt to revise shapes and forms and had profound effects on modern and postmodern art. This movement was a turning point in the history of art that nurtured many later artists to develop artistic ideas and expressive tools.

History of Cubism Painting

The old origins of Cubism painting can be found in the paintings of Paul Cézanne and art influenced by Africanism. However Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque, the pioneer painters of this style, built the foundations of this style by decomposing objects and combining different viewing angles.

The history of Cubism began in the early 20th century and its effects continued until the end of this century and even after that. Below, we examine the main stages of the history of this style:

  1. Background and inspiration: Before the emergence of Cubism, artists such as Paul Cézanne and Georges Braque experienced fractures and visual decomposability in their works, providing a suitable ground for the emergence of Cubism.
  2. Emergence and Establishment: Cubism was officially formed in the early 1900s with the exhibition of the first works of Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque in Paris. The first works of these artists, including the painting “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon” (Les Demoiselles d’Avignon) by Picasso, had radical and innovative effects on the artistic societies of that period.
  3. Spread and Influences: Cubism spread rapidly in the following decades and had wide-ranging influences on modern art. This trend widely inspired other artists and especially in the 1920s and 1930s, it created more developments in the direction of modern art.
  4. Evolution: During the decades after World War II, the Cubism movement evolved and we see a new generation of Cubist artists such as Fernand Leger and Nicolas de Stael who helped develop this art movement with their ideas.

In short, cubism is considered one of the most important artistic cultures of the 20th century, as one of the prominent and influential currents of modern art, using visual fractures and passives.

Stages of cubism:

  1. Analytical Cubism (1907-1909):

The paintings were divided into simple geometric shapes and earthy colors prevailed.

An example of paintings of this period: is Avi by Pablo Picasso (1907)

  1. Mixed Cubism (1912-1909):

The use of collage, brighter colors, and everyday objects made the paintings more abstract.

An example of this period’s paintings: Is Girl with a Guitar by Pablo Picasso (1910).

Features of Cubism Painting

  • Geometrical decomposition of objects: Instead of representing objects realistically, Cubists decomposed them into simple geometric shapes such as cubes, cylinders, and spheres.
  • Combination of different viewing angles: In cubist paintings, different viewing angles are displayed simultaneously, as if the viewer is looking at the same object from different angles.
  • Absence of perspective: artists of this style did not follow the traditional rules of perspective in their paintings. As such, depth and space are not traditionally displayed in this style.
  • Use of neutral colors: works of art were often painted using neutral colors such as brown, gray, and green.
  • Use of collage: In cubism painting, the technique of collage and pasting different materials such as newspaper, wallpaper, and fabric on the canvas is used.

Introduction of important books about cubism

“Cubism and 20th Century Art” by Robert Rosenblum

This book is a comprehensive overview of the Cubism movement and its effects on 20th-century art. The author examines the outstanding works of Cubism and their relationship with various aspects of modern art.

“Cubism” by Anne Ganteführer-Trier

This work provides a thorough introduction to the Cubist movement, from its emergence to its influence in the following decades. The author examines the techniques, artists, and famous works of this movement.

Famous artists and paintings of this style

In addition to Picasso and Braque, prominent artists such as Juan Grace, Fernand Leger, Robert Delaunay, and Sonia Delaunay worked in this style and created the following works:

  • Avignon by Pablo Picasso (1907)

Man with a Guitar by Pablo Picasso (1910)

  • Three Musicians by Pablo Picasso (1921)
  • Woman with Mandolin by Georges Braque (1910)

Harlequin and the Guitar by Juan Grace (1919)

Famous cubist paintings

In the following, we will look at some of the famous paintings of this style along with pictures and brief explanations about each one.

The Maidens of Avignon by Pablo Picasso (1907)

This painting is considered a turning point in the history of art and the beginning of cubism. In this work, Picasso presents a novel and new image of reality by decomposing faces and bodies and combining different angles.

Three Musicians by Pablo Picasso (1921)

This painting is an example of mixed cubism. In this work, brighter and more varied colors are used and everyday objects such as newspaper and wall paper are used.

Woman with a Mandolin by Georges Braque (1910)

This work is an analytical cubism painting. In this work, the woman’s face is divided into simple geometric shapes and depicted from different angles.

Harlequin and the Guitar by Juan Grace (1919)

This painting is an example of mixed cubism. In this work, brighter and more diverse colors are used and everyday objects such as cloth are used.


Cubism left a deep impact not only on painting but also on sculpture, architecture, design, and other artistic fields. This style paved the way for the emergence of abstract art movements such as Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art.

Cubism, as one of the most important modern art movements, presented a new perspective on art and the way of representing reality, pushed the boundaries of creativity, and paved the way for artistic innovations in the 20th century.

Resources for further study


Cubism Art Movement: History, Characteristics, Artwork

cubism art

about cubism

Cubism by Sabine Rewald

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