Picasso & Braque by Lee Miller

In my recent blogs, I showcased a few collages by Picasso and Braque. In doing so, I realized that, while they’re known to have pioneered Cubism, not everyone knows that there are actually two types of Cubism.

Truthfully, I didn’t know myself. I’m self-taught with no formal schooling. So, I’m always learning and that’s why my blogs are basic summaries, not in-depth analyses.

Hope you enjoy this one.

About Cubism

Cubism deconstructed objects, landscapes and people into geometric shapes with different viewpoints.This was revolutionary at that time – the early 1900’s – because even semi-representational work adhered to rules of perspective.

Analytical Cubism

Braque’s Glass on a Table

This was the infancy of Cubism. It was a phase that ran around 1907 to 1912 and was still mostly adopted by Picasso and Braque.

This type of cubism used a mostly dark colours and overlapping layers. It was simple in terms of shapes, but carefully analyzed and planned.

Artists would study a subject and disassemble it into blocks. Then they’d look at the blocks from different angles. Finally, they’d reconstruct the subject by painting its “blocks” from multiple viewpoints.

Synthetic Cubism

Picasso’s Bottle of Vieux Marc, Glass, Guitar & Newspaper


This was the second stage of the movement and it’s when collage entered into the fray – or, for that matter, the works looked like collages.

That’s because, during this phase, the emphasis was more on the assembly than the analysis.

Artists continued the technique of deconstruction and construction. However, they began using paper, newspapers and other materials to represent the different blocks and give greater dimension to the overall artwork.

It was around this time that brighter colors and more playfulness were introduced into their artwork.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *