Can you believe it’s the last month of 2021! Soon, 2020 will be two years ago; that’s crazy! All right, so for this month, I am writing about cubism, one of the most influential visual art styles of the early twentieth century with some names you are sure to recognize!

What is Cubism?

Cubism refers to a 20th-century avant-garde art movement. A movement that reconstituted painting and sculpture in Europe, it affected movements in music, literature, and architecture. The name cubism was coined by critic Louis Vauxcelles. He saws some of Georges Braque’s paintings describing them as “geometric outlines, to cubes,” hence the term cubism. Constructivism and neoplasticism were two movements that were based upon this movement.

The cubism artists didn’t use techniques that brought depth to the canvas such as linear perspective and other techniques that had been key in painting ever since the Renaissance. Rather, the two-dimensional flatness of the canvas was emphasized through certain methods. The artists would break down objects’ specific and recognizable areas of the canvas and shows multiple perspectives in the same area. This meant fractured, broken down pieces of an object in geometric forms, which were realigned within a shallow, relieflike space.

What Were The Two Phases?

There were two phases of cubism, quite different from each other. The first phase of cubism was austere analytical cubism. This was from 1908 to 1912. The artworks were sharp and severe with interweaving planes and lines. The muted color palettes included blacks, greys, and ochres. 

The second, and later phase, was synthetic cubism. This lasted from 1912 to 1914. It was known for the simple shapes and bright colors that made up the artwork. A new thing in these was including real objects and textures, such as newspapers, to bring these more to life; essentially collages. This was what started one of the most important modern art ideas.

Famous Cubism Artists

  1. Georges Braque (1882-1963)
    • He was a French painter, collagist, draughtsman, printmaker and sculptor.
    • He was part of numerous art movements/periods including cubism, expressionism, and fauvism.
    • Some of his most famous works include “Violin and Candlestick” (1910) and “Fruit Dish and Glass” (1912).
  2. Paul Cézanne (1839-1906)
    • He was a French artist who was influential in numerous movements including cubism, impressionism, romanticism and modern-art.
    • He is known for “his search for solutions to problems of representation” (Britannica).
    • Some of his most famous works include “The Large Bathers” (1898) and “The Basket of Apples” (1895).
  3. Pablo Picasso was an incredible artist known for his work in various movements, including cubism, truly shaping parts of the art world. (Check out my surrealism post to learn more about him!)
  4. Salvador Dalí was another amazing artist known for him work in cubism, and surrealism (I talked about him in surrealism, so if you want to learn more about him, go there!)

Images & Examples

I hope you enjoyed reading this month’s post! If you like this blog, drop a like, and check out our other blogs! Don’t forget to subscribe! Let me know in the comments if you are intrigued by cubism and enjoy making art in this style! 


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3 thoughts on “Cubism

    1. Thank you for your feedback! I have mentioned them in previous articles in the famous artist section. mentioning their work in cubism, however, I will definitely add them to cubism as well! Thanks, great to hear that!

      Edit: I added them, thanks for letting me know 🙂


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