Cézanne self-portrait with pink background

Cézanne self-portrait with pink background
Cézanne self-portrait with pink background

Throughout history there are several painters who have repeatedly used themselves as a source of inspiration. Perhaps the most paradigmatic case is that of the German painterAlbert Dürer, who found in his face all the beauty that he wanted to show in his paintings. However, not all the painters who have taken abundant self-portraits have done so for this reason. An example in this line is Paul Cézanne.


Self-Portrait with Pink Background by Cezanne

Thanks to his paintings we can conclude thatCézannewas not exactly a beautiful person. A bald, bearded guy, overweight, of a certain age, which did not prevent him from painting himself almost 50 times. One of them is this one with the explanatory title of “on a pink background”.

A painting that follows the pattern of practically all of his self-portraits, since as a rule it is presented in profile and bust, and turned to the right, and with a frowning gesture characteristic of the character of him a bit surly.

This particular work, which he produced around 1875 and which is preserved in theMusée d'Orsay in Paris, has the peculiarity that it looks intensely at us viewers, being able to admire thus the sullen character of him. The truth is that he looks at us, but without interacting, he almost despises us or annoys him.

On the other hand, Cézanne takes himself as he did with his still life. He doesn'tIt is interesting both to show its expressiveness, and to capture the three dimensions on a flat surface, resorting as little as possible to techniques such as shading or the most typical perspectives. He works more based on forms and strokes, in this case very impasto, especially for the background or for his head. His brushstrokes are not the work of a painter, but rather of a sculptor. On occasion it has been said that he did not paint his images, he modeled them.

And for that he used few colors. In this case there is only black and gray for the suit, hair, beard and eyes, green for the few shadows, and the evolution from pink to red for the background, the bald head and the face.

It must be taken into account that his work process was extremely slow, due to the master's own desire for perfection. That is why portraits are not common, not everyone was willing to pose for so many sessions for him. That is why he painted so much of himself, just as he made numerous portraits of her wife Hortense Fiquet, a selfless model for her husband.

Popular topic