Between 1911 and 1912,
Frantisek Kupka produced several works with the same title: Newton Discs. And specifically, the one we show here is an oil painting painted in oil in 1912 that is currently preserved in National Museum of Modern Art in Paris, better known as Georges Center Pompidou.
Kupka Newton's Disks
All these works belong to a period in the production of Frank Kupka (1871 – 1957) in which he made images with a systematic abstraction, and of course his interest is evident in the pictorial current of Orphism that represented Robert Delaunay. In fact, the similarities between this work and the painting Rhythm are undeniable. Joie de vivre by Delaunay.
In these years he follows theOrphismof circular forms, although soon after he will explore new fields playing with vertical planes at different heights and varying color tones. In a way, he is including other elements and values in his painting, which we could call more typical of the current of Constructivism, represented above all by painters of Russian origin such as Alexander Rodchenko, author of paintings like Color Sphere and Circle.
But in these Newton Discs, in addition to seeing the traces of orphist art in its circular forms, in the vibrant color and the overall dynamism ofelements and composition, also other interesting notes.
For example, he completely renounces any treatment of the more academic perspective, and yet he is able to achieve that those circles and those shapes have corporeality and give the sensation of volume.
And then there is another element in the painting of this Czech artist that is a very personal condition. And it is that he always has some music in his compositions. In fact, this canvas has a sub title that is Study for a fugue in two colors. And it achieves this with certain blurring of tones, which precisely also helps with the idea of depth and volume that we talked about in the previous paragraph.
Kupkais a staunch supporter ofabstract art, although his first steps as a painter were taken within the Modernism. However, he found his art when he tried not to include any figurative elements, as in this case
That type of abstract art he compared to architecture, another artistic manifestation that expresses itself with forms that do not imitate nature at all, but that still have an enormous aesthetic value. Ultimately, Kupka is a champion and theoretician of abstract art, for which he thought that only invented elements were needed.