World of Fantasy and Analysis

A pioneer in cubism, Juan Gris had a split vision of reality

I find my pictures excessively cold," the cubist painter Juan Gris complained to his dealer, Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler, in 1915. "Oh, how I wish I had the freedom and the charm of the unfinished! Well, it can't be helped. One must after all paint as one is oneself. My mind is too precise to go dirtying a blue or twisting a straight line."

Compared with that of Picasso or Braque, the inventors of cubism, Gris' work does seem programmed and synthesized: in its...

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