The Card Players by Paul Cezanne (5th version-cropped), ca.1894–1895
For Picasso, Paul Cezanne was simply “the father of us all.” As a pioneer of modernism, Cezanne’s keen observations of the structural aspects of nature point to future developments in art. Beginning his career with naturalistic figurative paintings, he gradually shifted to a style he felt exposed their more solid geometric underpinnings. He also introduced simultaneous views of perspective that further reduced objects to their basic forms.
Cezanne often worked from locations near his studio in Aix en Provence, some of which have hardly changed today. Over time, paintings of places such as Mont Sainte-Victoire reflected his maturing interest in a more abstract style that defined a new direction in 20th century art.
Art historian Joseph Cassar explores key works by Cezanne that include still-lifes, portraits and landscapes, his famous series of card players and bathers, as well as studies in composition, symmetry and plein air painting.
World Art History Certificate elective: Earn 1/2 credit*
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