Despite the apparent flatness of the composition, it suggests depth with bold colors and sudden changes in perspective. Gris painted this picture in Céret, a small town in the Pyrenees popular with artists, most notably Picasso, who spent the summer of 1911 and parts of 1912 and 1913 there.
Inscription: Signed and dated (verso): Juan Gris/ Céret 9–13
[Galerie Kahnweiler, Paris, 1913–14; stock no. K8914; sequestered Kahnweiler stock, Paris, 1914–22; third Kahnweiler sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, July 4, 1922, no. 96, sold for Fr 120, as "La Guitare," to Ohn]; Mme Ohn, Paris (from 1922); [Galerie Simon, Paris]; [Galerie Louise Leiris, Paris, from July 1953]; [Jacques Lindon, New York, 1953; stock no. JV493; sold on October 8, 1953, for $17,230, as "The Guitar," to Gelman]; Jacques and Natasha Gelman, Mexico City and New York (1953–his d. 1986); Natasha Gelman, Mexico City and New York (1986–d. 1998; her bequest to MMA)
Dortmund. Museum am Ostwall. "Juan Gris," October 23–December 4, 1965, no. 16 (lent by Mr. and Mrs. Jacques Gelman, Mexico City).
Paris. Orangerie des Tuileries. "Juan Gris," March 14–July 1, 1974, no. 17 (lent by Mr. et Mrs. Jacques Gelman, Mexico).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Twentieth-Century Modern Masters: The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection," December 12, 1989–April 1, 1990, unnumbered cat. (p. 123).
London. Royal Academy of Arts. "Twentieth-Century Modern Masters: The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection," April 19–July 15, 1990, unnumbered cat.
Martigny. Fondation Pierre Gianadda. "De Matisse à Picasso: Collection Jacques et Natasha Gelman," June 18–November 1, 1994, unnumbered cat. (p. 147).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Florene M. Schoenborn Bequest: 12 Artists of the School of Paris," February 11–May 4, 1997, extended to August 31, 1997, not in brochure [see Ref. Glueck 1997].
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Painters in Paris: 1895–1950," March 8–December 31, 2000, extended to January 14, 2001, not in catalogue.
John Golding. Cubism: A History and an Analysis 1907–1914. 2nd rev. ed. (1st ed., 1959). New York, 1968, p. 132, colorpl. C (1959 ed., ill. front cover), calls it "The Guitar" and dates it summer 1913; erroneously identifies it as one of the paintings cited by Gris in a September 17, 1913 letter to Kahnweiler [see Douglas Cooper, ed., "Letters of Juan Gris (1913–1927)," London, 1956, pp. 2–3, letter no. III].
Werner Spies. "Juan Gris oder: Der Gang durch das Prisma." Frankfurter Allgemeine (April 22, 1974), p. 25, ill.
Jean Leymarie inJuan Gris. Exh. cat., Orangerie des Tuileries. Paris, 1974, p. 13.
Michèle Richet and Claudie Judrin inJuan Gris. Exh. cat., Orangerie des Tuileries. Paris, 1974, p. 80, no. 17, ill. pp. 26 (color), 80.
Juan Antonio Gaya-Nuño. Juan Gris. Boston, 1975, p. 247, no. 249, ill. p. 213, as "Guitar on a Table".
Douglas Cooper with Margaret Potter. Juan Gris: Catalogue raisonné de l'oeuvre peint. Paris, 1977, vol. 1, pp. XL, 92–93, no. 53, ill., call it "Guitare sur une table (Guitar on a Table)"; include it among thirteen pictures executed at Céret from August to the end of October 1913 [see Ref. Derouet 1999].
Malcolm Gee. Dealers, Critics, and Collectors of Modern Painting: Aspects of the Parisian Art Market Between 1910 and 1930. PhD diss., Courtauld Institute of Art. New York, 1981, appendix F, pp. 68, 84, no. 52, notes that it sold for Fr 120 to Mme Ohn at the third Kahnweiler sale.
Juan Antonio Gaya Nuño. Juan Gris. New York, 1986, colorpl. 43, as "Still Life with Guitar".
Sabine Rewald inTwentieth-Century Modern Masters: The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection. Ed. William S. Lieberman. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1989, pp. 122–23, 301, ill. (color and bw).
William S. Lieberman inTwentieth-Century Modern Masters: The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection. Ed. William S. Lieberman. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1989, p. 13.
Gary Tinterow inTwentieth-Century Modern Masters: The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection. Ed. William S. Lieberman. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1989, p. 34.
Grace Glueck. "A Surprise, and Then a Collection." New York Times (February 28, 1997), p. C31, notes that this picture was included in the 1997 exhibition of the Schoenborn collection, paired with another Gris still life of 1913 (MMA 1996.403.14).
Christian Derouet, ed. Juan Gris: Correspondances avec Léonce Rosenberg, 1915–1927. Paris, 1999, p. 67, letter no. 104 n. 17, lists this picture among twelve painted in Céret, referencing Gris's August 10, 1917 letter to Rosenberg categorizing ten paintings signed at Céret between August 1 and October 30, 1913 [see Ref. Cooper 1977].
William S. Lieberman. "Les Peintres de Paris à New York." Connaissance des arts no. 578 (December 2000), p. 130, ill. (color).
Roberta Smith. "In a Brash Yet Refined School, Everyone Belongs Together." New York Times (June 15, 2001), p. E37.
María Dolores Jiménez-Blanco, ed. Juan Gris: Correspondencia y escritos. Barcelona, 2008, p. 182 n. 287.
Douglas Cooper, with Margaret Potter, updated by Alan Hyman, and Elizabeth Snowden. Juan Gris: Catalogue raisonné de l’oeuvre peint/ Catalogue Raisonné of the Paintings. 2nd ed. (1st ed., 1977). San Francisco, 2014, vol. 1, p. 101, no. 53, ill. (color), call it "Guitare sur une table (Guitar on a Table; Guitarra sobre una Mesa)".