Violin and Playing Cards on a Table

Artist: Juan Gris (Spanish, Madrid 1887–1927 Boulogne-sur-Seine)

Date: 1913

Medium: Oil on canvas

Dimensions: 39 1/2 × 25 3/4 in. (100.3 × 65.4 cm)

Classification: Paintings

Credit Line: Bequest of Florene M. Schoenborn, 1995

Accession Number: 1996.403.14


Gris composed this work during a three-month trip in 1913 to the small village of Céret in the Pyrenees. While this painting is not signed or dated, its colorful Cubist style of broad, angular, overlapping planes indicates that it belongs to a group of still lifes produced at this time. Here, Gris has painted a wood-grain table with three playing cards—heart, diamond, and club—a violin, and a copy of the newspaper Le Journal. The rust-red diamond pattern in the background emulates wallpaper and provides the fragmented image with the suggestion of depth.