This collage is one of three by Gris that showcases the word “explorers” and news of an international dispute over who “discovered” an unmapped river in the Amazon Basin. The headline “Explorateurs en désaccord” (Explorers in Discord) and claims of precedence likely allude to the rivalry, or even a rift, between Braque and Picasso. Gris doctored the newspaper to appear as a single page when it really consists of two. The headline from the previous day, “L’enquête atroce” (The Atrocious Affair), while providing a wry gloss on the other story here, reports on war crimes committed during the Second Balkan War. More often than the two “pioneering” Cubists, Gris interrupted the artifice of his still lifes with brutal realities from the real world.
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Title:The Musician’s Table
Artist:Juan Gris (Spanish, Madrid 1887–1927 Boulogne-sur-Seine)
Medium:Conté crayon, wax crayon, gouache, cut-and-pasted printed wallpaper, blue and white laid papers, transparentized paper, newspaper, and brown wrapping paper; selectively varnished on canvas
Dimensions:31 1/2 × 23 3/4 in. (80 × 60.3 cm)
Credit Line:Leonard A. Lauder Cubist Collection, Purchase, Leonard A. Lauder Gift, in celebration of the Museum’s 150th Anniversary, 2018
Inscription: Signed (verso): Juan Gris [now concealed by board]
[Galerie Kahnweiler, Paris; acquired from the artist, ca. 1914; sequestered Kahnweiler stock, Paris, ca. 1914–1921; second Kahnweiler sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, November 17–18, 1921, no. 149, sold for Fr 200 to Leoncé Rosenberg, Paris for Sitwell]; Sir Osbert Sitwell, London (from 1921); [Marlborough Fine Art, Limited, London, in 1958]; G. David Thompson, Pittsburgh (until d. 1965; his estate sale, Parke Bernet Galleries, Inc., New York, March 23, 1966, no. 24, sold to Rockefeller); Peggy and David Rockefeller, New York (1966–her d. 1996); David Rockefeller, New York (1996–d. 2017; their estate sale, Christie's, New York, May 8, 2018, no. 2, sold to MMA with funds donated by Leonard A. Lauder, New York)
London. Marlborough Fine Art Limited. "Juan Gris 1887–1927: Retrospective Exhibition," February–March 1958, no. 6 (as "La table du musicien").
Washington, D.C. National Gallery of Art. "Juan Gris," October 16–December 31, 1983, no. 23 (as "La table du musicien," lent by a private collection, New York).
Madrid. Salas Pablo Ruiz Picasso. "Juan Gris (1887–1927)," September 20–November 24, 1985, no. 25 (as "La mesa del músico [La Table du Musicien]").
Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. "Cinq Siècles d’art Espagnol: Le Siècle de Picasso," October 10, 1987–January 3, 1988, no. 17.
Museum of Modern Art, New York. "Masterpieces from the David and Peggy Rockefeller Collection: Manet to Picasso," June 9–September 6, 1994, unnumbered cat. (p. 65).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Cubism and the Trompe l'Oeil Tradition," October 17, 2022–January 22, 2023, unnumbered cat. (pl. 100).
Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler and John Russell. Juan Gris 1887–1927: Retrospective Exhibition. Exh. cat., Marlborough Fine Art Limited. London, 1958, unpaginated, no. 6, ill.
Clement Greenberg. "The Pasted-Paper Revolution." Art News 57 (September 1958), p. 49, fig. 7.
"Paintings by Gwen John, Marquet and Juan Gris: At Three Current London Exhibitions." Illustrated London News 232 (February 15, 1958), p. 273, ill.
"Le Guide de l'acheteur." Connaissance des arts no. 197–198 (July–August 1968), p. 148, fig. 5.
Juan Antonio Gaya-Nuño. Juan Gris. Paris, 1974, p. 243, no. 266, ill. p. 211, calls it "Violon et journal".
Douglas Cooper with Margaret Potter. Juan Gris: Catalogue raisonné de l'oeuvre peint. Paris, 1977, vol. 1, pp.138–39, no. 84, ill.
Mark Rosenthal. Juan Gris. Exh. cat., University Art Museum, University of California, Berkeley. New York, 1983, pp. 53, 58, 70, 178, no. 23, ill. p. 57 (color).
Margaret Potter. The David and Peggy Rockefeller Collection. Vol. 1, European Works of Art. New York, 1984, pp. 278–80, no. 108, ill. (color).
Lewis Kachur. "Exhibition Reviews: New York, Juan Gris." Burlington Magazine 126 (June 1984), p. 382.
Gary Tinterow, ed. Juan Gris (1887–1927). Exh. cat., Salas Pablo Ruiz Picasso. Madrid, 1985, pp. 38–39, 156, 308–9, no. 25, ill. p. 157 (color).
Rosemarie Mulcahy. Spanish Paintings in the National Gallery of Ireland. Dublin, 1988, p. 28.
Emmanuel Bréon. Juan Gris à Boulogne. Paris, 1992, pp. 18, 126 n. 5.
Nigel Glendinning. "Reviews: Christopher Green, with contributions by Christian Derouet & Karin von Maur, 'Juan Gris'." Journal of Hispanic Research 2 (1993–94), pp. 152–53.
David Rockefeller and J. Kirk T. Varnedoe inMasterpieces from The David and Peggy Rockefeller Collection: Manet to Picasso. Ed. J. Kirk T. Varnedoe. Exh. cat., Museum of Modern Art. New York, 1994, pp. 17, 64, 94–95, ill. p. 65 (color).
Federica Rovati. "Opere di Umberto Boccioni tra 1914 e 1915." Prospettiva no. 112 (October 2003), pp. 46, 63 n. 19, fig. 3.
Sarah Moss. "'Le Vrai et le Faux’ in Juan Gris’s ‘The Table’ (1914)." Burlington Magazine 153 (September 2011), p. 577, fig. 21 (color).
Patricia Leighten. The Liberation of Painting: Modernism and Anarchism in Avant-Guerre Paris. Chicago, 2013, pp. 139–40, colorpl. 23.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide. New York, 2019, p. 403, ill. and ill. cover (color, overall and detail).
Max Hollein. Modern and Contemporary Art in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2019, ill. p. 31 (color).
Max Hollein inGifts of Art: The Met's 150th Anniversary. Ed. Jennifer Bantz et al. New York, 2020, p. 8.
Stephanie D'Alessandro inGifts of Art: The Met's 150th Anniversary. Ed. Jennifer Bantz et al. New York, 2020, pp. 124, 198, ill. (color).
Emily Braun in Emily Braun and Elizabeth Cowling. Cubism and the Trompe l’Oeil Tradition. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2022, pp. 198, 245, 262 n. 3, colorpl. 100.
Rachel Mustalish in Emily Braun and Elizabeth Cowling. Cubism and the Trompe l’Oeil Tradition. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2022, pp. 74–78, 81–82, 84, figs. 61, 64c, 73a,b–74, 77–78 (color details).
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