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Max Papart

1911 - 1994

Max Papart was a French artist born on December 19, 1911 in Marseilles, France. The artist studied at the School of Fine Arts in Marseilles before moving to Paris in 1936, where he began exhibiting at the Salon des Indepedants. In the years 1969–1973, he taught printmaking at the University of Paris VIII in Vincennes.


Papart is probably best known for his cubist style in which he depicts circus scenes, flirting couples, soaring birds, and similar cheerful subjects with flat, overlapping planes of contrasting colors and textures which suggest many levels of depth. His work often achieved what has been called a "time window" effect, through which the viewer senses the past or future. This is not to say that Papart is simply a purveyor of superficial entertainment. For all their decorative gaiety, his works also force the viewer to think. As the noted critic André Parinaud put it, "We are going to rediscover Max Papart as one of the masters of the second cubist generation." Today, Papart’s works are in the collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, and the National Gallery in London, among others.

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