Modern Art Monday Presents: Wasp and Pear By Gerald Murphy

Wasp and Pear
Photo By Gail

In 1922, upon discovering the cubist paintings of Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque and Juan Gris in the window of a Paris gallery, Gerald Murphy told his wife, “If this is painting, then this is what I want to do.” Soon after, he ended his career as landscape architect and turned to painting.

In Wasp and Pear (1929), Murphy combined an abstract background with an anatomically detailed but highly stylized wasp, pear, leaf and honeycomb. The artist credited “the large technically drawn and colored charts of fruits, vegetables…[and] insects” in a classroom where he has studied during his military training as his inspiration.

Gerald Murphy (1888 – 1964) painted only fourteen known works, seven of which remain.

Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.

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