Series - Violins and guitars in Art

“The Guitar Player” by Jan Vermeer van Delft, 1670.
Edgar Degas "The Dance Lesson", 1879.
For us it's more of a painting lesson!

“Still Life with Violin,” William Michael Harnett, a painting from 1888.
Picasso, “Bass Bottle and Guitar”, 1912
Pablo Picasso, “Guitar”, December 1912.
The glued paper technique, invented by Georges Braque in Sorgues in September 1912, is one of the most characteristic manifestations of the phase known as synthetic cubism. Picasso seized on it almost immediately, writing to his friend in October that he was using his latest “paperistic and dusty processes”.
Characterized by the integration of elements directly borrowed from reality, the collaged papers are places of a fertile encounter between life and art, and in particular between popular street culture, with its advertisements and newspapers, and the noble culture of fine arts, with its molded frames and still lifes.
The glued papers then interact intimately with the small and fragile paper constructions or contemporary Guitar assemblages, and now nourished by the intimate knowledge of the Wobé-Grébo mask acquired in Marseille at the beginning of August 1912.
Pfff, I don't even have time to read the newspaper, that devil Picasso has already cut it out! “Bottle, glass and violin”, 1912-1913.
Juan Gris, “Violin and glass”, 1913.
In 1913, a masterpiece was born under the fingers of Georges Braque, “Woman with a Guitar”, cubism in its perfection.
And that’s what Picasso did in 1913. “Violin hanging on the wall.”
“Guitar Player”, 1914, by Pablo Picasso.
Henri Matisse, “Interior of the violin case”, 1918.
Juan Gris, "Harlequin on the guitar", 1919.
In “The Green Violinist” from 1923, Chagall evokes his native country and religion. Chagall believed that it was possible to achieve communion with God through music and dance. The violinist is essential in Jewish ceremonies and festivals.
This is one of Chagall's paintings that made me, belatedly, love and even adore his work. You have to imagine yourself facing this 2m high canvas. I was overwhelmed by the color, then by the details, then again by the hues, then the elements and geometric shapes which seem stacked, then all the references jostle together, historical, religious or artistic. So, I no longer struggle, I accept to receive this painting as a gift, I enter, here I am in the small village of Vitebsk, I meet the actors of the history of art, oh, now , I am in Saint-Paul, in my childhood, I hear the voice of Chagall, that of my grandmother...
I stay in this happiness of painting for a long time, the most difficult thing is to come out and return to reality.
For my violins and guitars series, one of the most famous art violins. "Le Violon d'Ingres" photograph by the American Man Ray taken in 1924. It represents Kiki de Montparnasse, naked, whose back displays the soundholes of a violin.
Man Ray meets Kiki de Montparnasse, whose real name is Alice Prin, in a café and offers to photograph her. She hesitates, she already poses for many painters.
Man Ray recounts in his autobiography that he then managed to convince her by telling her: "I photograph as I paint, transforming the subject as a painter would". Kiki becomes the photographer's first companion in Paris. She moves to his house, she poses for him and inspires him. Man Ray undoubtedly owes a large part of his fame to Kiki, in addition to his progress in the French language.
The "Catalan Peasant with Guitar" painted in 1924 is part of a series of paintings produced after Miró's first visit to Paris in 1920 and his meetings with Dadaist or Surrealist poets and artists. The artist simplifies his compositions and chooses a personal language composed of signs and lines. Here, the peasant with his characteristic red cap is stylized and his contours contrast sharply with the intense blue background which dominates the painting.
The colors of summer with Henri Matisse, “Tabac Royal”, 1943.
Raoul Dufy, "The Red Violin", 1948.
"The sad king, a charming dancer and a character strumming a kind of guitar from which a flight of gold-colored flying saucers escaped, making the upper tour of the composition to end up in a mass around the dancer in action." This is how Henri Matisse himself described “The Sadness of the King”.
While Matisse was bedridden, no longer able to paint, he reinvented his art with gouache and cut-out papers, and created this immense masterpiece, almost 3m by 4m, 292 x 386 cm. Begun in early 1952, when the Chapel of the Rosary was finally completed, “La Tristesse du Roi” is the first cut-out gouache to enter French public collections during Matisse's lifetime.
Richard Lindner, "Rock-rock", 1966, less star but more inventive American pop.
For my guitar series, morning coffee with Peter Sellers.
Tomorrow, we hope he will play the harmonica!
In almost every one of his films there is a scene with a guitar.
Manitas de Plata was a star, a talent and a crazy charm and what a musician! I remember if he was on the Nice side and when Miró was at Saint-Paul, he never failed to come home to see him again. A historic photo, here he is with his musicians, in Vevey, surrounding Charlie Chaplin who is singing at the top of his lungs.
Henri Matisse, in Nice, with “La Tristesse du Roi” in 1952.
This work inaugurates the large decorations in gouache cut out with figures. Matisse designed a huge wall panel inspired by the biblical theme of King David – Salome dancing before Herod –, extensively treated in the history of painting, which he describes as follows: "The sad King, a charming dancer and a character scratching a species guitar from which a flight of gold-colored flying saucers escaped, making the upper tour of the composition to end up in a mass around the dancer in action.
Presented at the Salon de Mai in 1952, just after its acquisition by the State, the panel was unanimously praised by critics: "Matisse's great collage, even more extraordinary than his Jazz (it's the same style), with its curved rhythm on a background of horizontals, is the highlight of the Salon; better: a masterpiece; it is rare to find more breadth and fullness, a lesson for all." In: Today's Art, June 1952.