Why is Cubism the most influential movement of the 20th century?
The reason is its influence over artists from other popular movements.
Although the movement saw roots in the works of Post Impressionist Artists, its principles, values, and painting styles were unique and beyond one’s imagination.
Dozens of painters have contributed to the movement, producing countless famous Cubist paintings.
Not only that, these Cubism art pieces created a platform for individuals and art lovers to get to know about different aspects of Cubism. Which included Cubism features, Cubism themes, and Cubism styles.
Every artist, from Juan to Albert, devoted themselves to the movement and promoted it through Cubist artworks.
Their Cubist paintings’ influence was profound yet massive.
Most of their work even overshadowed the well-known Cubist artworks of Pablo and Braque.
Pablo’s and Braque’s famous Cubist paintings were largely a response to the instigators of World War I.
Which is why art critics and lovers know only about theirs. However, we attempted to include theirs, as well as other meaningful Cubist paintings, on the list because they deserved to be noticed.
In simple words, all those artworks, that embraced Cubism styles and techniques, while showing transition in the movement.
1. Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, Pablo Picasso, 1907.
Les Demoiselles d’Avignon was Pablo’s earliest Cubism painting, which gave birth to modern art and was actually a precursor to the idea that later came to be known as Cubism.
It was one of Pablo’s most controversial paintings, the reason being its style and subject matter.
This famous Cubist artwork depicted five naked women in a brothel, which apparently belonged to Barcelona. Their bodies are disjointed, and they have unsettling facial expressions.
In the first place, Pablo hadn’t thought of giving it an abstract touch; the idea was to depict a brothel scene with prostitutes and their clients.
As he progressed with the work, he changed the initial plan.
The final preview appeared in an abstract form with intertwined shapes, which also reflected African culture as women used to wear African ceremonial masks.
Pablo’s painting garnered viewers’ attention for its controversial elements. That’s why it wasn’t shown in public until 1916.
The first public appearance it made was in a 1910 magazine article.
Suggested read: Personalized cat gifts.
2. Guernica, Pablo Picasso, 1937
Guernica will always remain Pablo’s finest and most famous Cubist painting. This Cubist artwork depicts a group of people and animals in a discomforting position.
This is due to the repercussions of war.
The work was officially seen as a tragedy of war and an embodiment of peace.
It was Pablo’s response to the bombing of Guernica by Nazi and Fascist forces.
But what makes it one of the famous Cubist paintings?
The painting created in 1937 was actually commissioned by the Spanish government.
The purpose was to spread awareness of the consequences of war and raise some funds at 1937’s Paris World Fair, where it would be displayed.
Unfortunately, it didn’t succeed in garnering attention.
Later, it faced criticism from Tony Shafrazi, who defaced it by spraying red paint.
For many years, its hidden images were a source of contention. You’ll see a skull, which is imposed on a horse’s body, and the bull’s emergence from the horse’ bent leg.
The other reason it’s regarded as a famous Cubist painting is its unavailability for sale. However, according to some sources, its valuation would probably be over $200 million if it went for sale.
3. Weeping Woman, Pablo Picasso, 1937
Another Cubist painting by Pablo is a sign of silent protest against the Guernica bombing.
Pablo displayed pain, grief, and angst caused by the bombing attack.
It’s an image of an emotional woman. The artist used bright colors to emphasize her pain.
The use of a model, none other than Dora Maar, who appeared in several of Pablo’s cubist artworks, is what made this work a famous Cubist painting.
Pablo completed The Weeping Woman in October 1937—a few months after completing his Cubist painting, Guernica.
The Cubist painting was often seen as an art piece depicting immense pain and massive loss.
According to records, it’s the most expensive piece of art owned by any gallery in Australia.
The Australian National Gallery cost AU$1.3 million in 1974.
The next two artworks belong to Georges Braque, a cofounder of the Cubism movement who would use colors and large planes to represent objects.
4. Violin and Candlestick, Georges Braque, 1910
The Cubist paintings The Violin and Candlestick demonstrate George’s obsession with form and stability.
The famous cubist painting creates an illusion in the viewer’s mind, which was made by many conglomerating subjects and covering their boundaries with earth-toned colors.
The monochromatic styles actually accentuate the subject. One part reveals its meaning, but the other part’s message is difficult to decipher.
One of the famous Cubist paintings hung at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art is Violin and Candlestick, which clearly reflects Cubist styles.
5. Woman with a Guitar, Georges Braque, 1913
It’s one of the largest Cubist paintings by Georges, made with oil and charcoal paints.
The name tells what a Cubist painting depicts. A woman seems to be looking down at the guitar, which is formed with fractured planes and mixed perspectives.
The purpose of adding text to it is to give it meaning.
Despite being broken and fractured, it isn’t chaotic.
This Cubist painting is famous for several reasons: the first being its display of visual dynamics through balance. The other is balancing out figurative and geometric elements.
This famous Cubist painting is at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris.
6. Portrait of Pablo Picasso, Juan Gris, 1912
The famous Cubist painting is a tribute to the artist’s mentor, Pablo Picasso.
Because of the more structured geometric composition, the style is reminiscent of analytic cubism.
The artist used clear color panels and let the subject blend with the background.
In order to keep the painting simple, the painter stuck to a limited range of blue, brown, and gray shades, following the dynamics of analytic cubism.
Gris displayed this world-famous Cubist painting in 1912. Not only does this Cubist painting exhibit his maturity, but also his potential.
What makes it one of the most famous Cubist paintings is its use of text to give context and meaning to viewers.
7. Still Life before an Open Window, Juan Gris, 1915
Juan Gris created this masterpiece, a Cubist painting, in 1915.
It has the most impeccable features; it combines outdoor and indoor views within the same painting.
The Philadelphia Art Museum owns the synthetic cubism-inspired painting.
The reason it’s on the list of famous Cubist paintings is its composition. Its background elements are clearly identified, whereas the foreground contains still-life arrangements, as the title suggests.
The majority of Cubist painting is dominated by an intense and unearthly blue.
A wide range of elements is displayed at the center, including a newspaper, a wine glass, a book, and other unclear subjects.
The other reason the painting turned out to be one of the most famous Cubist paintings is because of its perfect blend of interior and exterior through interrelated pictorial elements and vibrant colors.
8. La Femme aux Phlox, Albert, 1910
One of the finest examples of Cubist paintings is none other than La Femme aux Phlox.
The Cubist painting depicts a woman sitting in a chair, with her head pointing down and a vase of flowers in her front and on the corner, next to her right foot.
The exhibition where it was first displayed provided a platform for Cubist artists. For the first time, it introduced people to cubism as a group manifestation.
There were over 6500 artworks in the exhibition. Prominent names from the Cubism movement showed up at the venue.
However, the painting garnered eyeballs for the wrong reasons. Perhaps not for the wrong reasons, since room 41, where it was exhibited, was full.
People were storming in and out with indignation, protest, laughter, encouragement, and whatnot.
This will be one of the few famous Cubist paintings that opens the doors to both chaos and compassion.
The French Parliament was in disagreement with the display of cubist artworks. It was told that the cubist painters had collected public funds for their own use—to produce something that’s illogical and baseless.
However, many came forward in support of Albert and other cubist contributors, which brought massive attention to this cubist art piece.
9. Girl with a Mandolin, Pablo Picasso, 1910
Pablos’ Cubist artwork wasn’t fully the subject of abstraction. Because some of its elements could be identified with the naked eye.
For instance, the mandolin and a girl playing it are clearly noticed. Girl with a Mandolin was one of Pablo’s more difficult works to decipher.
The birth of Pablo Picasso’s Cubism art took place when he met Fernande Olivier in 1910 during a summer vacation in Cadaques.
Picasso at that point had shifted to analytical cubism from the early cubism phase—the time in which he invested surface ornaments with intrinsic value.
Which is why “The Girl with a Mandolin” is considered the first piece of analytical cubism, where the subjects are being created with geometric planes and shapes.
Pablo was concerned and worried because it had received criticism for devoting of reality.
Although it is partially abstract, it’s still a representation of plasticity.
This stunning piece of Cubism is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, New York.
10. Houses at L’Estaque, Georges Braque, 1908
This is one of the famous Cubist paintings by Georges, which raised many eyebrows.
It was said that the cubist painting was Geoges’ official entry into real Cubism. However, some painters claimed that the painting was the first Cubist landscape artwork.
Like other Cubists’ paintings, the artwork consists of an unearthly blue tone, geometric planes, cubes, and shapes.
The painting, which depicts the French village of L’Estaque, was the main subject of many paintings at the time.
The cubist painting didn’t perform well. Also, it was knocked back by the Salon d’Automne.
Not only that, the jury members—Guérin, Marquet, Rouault, and Matisse rejected Braque’s six landscape paintings.
11. I and the Village, Marc Chagall, 1911
The Cubist painting, “I and The Village,” was created after Marc moved to Paris from Russia.
The famous Cubist painting is full of imaginary elements overlapping each other. You’ll see a man with a green mask looking at the goat, whose cheek shows a goat being milked.
In the foreground, there’s a woman upside down playing violin and a man marching towards her with a scythe over his shoulder.
It’s said that the famous Cubist painting depicts the artist’s childhood memory of Russia.
This Cubist art piece received attention for its fine depiction of human nature, and its use of colors and figurative elements.
Today, it’s in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, New York.
The idea, that sprouted from Cezanne’s work turned out to be a whole movement, producing tons of Cubist artwork.
Although the prime movers, Pablo and Braque, contributed massively to the movement and reach of the style, other artists like Juan, Albert, Salvador, and others also played a remarkable role in it.
Hence, many artworks are considered to be the finest examples of Cubist work, which we included on this list.
I hope you have found these famous Cubist paintings valuable and learned how they made the movement popular.
If you liked the artwork and would like to have a replica of famous artwork at your home, you can connect with us.
We produce replicas of renowned artworks, be they cubist paintings, abstract paintings, or nude paintings.