Cubism

Since I am on the point of artistic abstraction, I spent a lot of time today looking at a painting by Picasso called Man with a Clarinet. For hours I could not figure this painting out. I decided I would not leave the museum until I had achieved some understanding of Cubism. So here is what I think Cubism is: Cubism is an attempt to cast multi dimensions in two dimensions. It is a dynamic painting style. When I look at any object in real life I never see it from just one perspective and under just one lighting condition. It is never static and frozen in the way a photograph would portray it. Instead, real objects are always viewed in three dimensions and under varying light conditions. I see an object from the front, then from the sides and perhaps even from the back and the light varies from all perspectives. Viewing an object in real life is therefore never static. It is dynamic. Cubism attempts to look at an object from multi angles and under multi lighting conditions and then slices the image up into pieces and lays them down in two dimensions. I looked repeated at Picasso’s painting trying to make sense of it. I spent almost an hour studying it. I eventually went away and came back a few hours later and finally it hit me. I saw the man with the clarinet! It was like a burst of brilliance hit me. It is a great work of art! But it is highly abstract and it took a lot of time to break down my mental walls before I could understand the abstraction.


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