In the beginning of the 20th century when collage became a distinctive part of modern art, Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque used the collage technique in their art work. Following his colleagues, Juan Gris created a collage titled, The Table. He used colored papers, prints, newspaper fragments and charcoal on paper mounted in canvas. The Table was designed to raise the question what in the art is “real” and what is “false” by combining elements from the real world with the space of the painting.
In 1964, the African-American artist Romare Bearden created a collage, The Dove. Bearden used different paper fragments, gouache, and colored pencils to create this collage. His work was inspired by the writer Ralph Ellison’s novel, Invisible Man. The novel emphasizes the African-American culture and its experience. Bearden used images from the Ebony, Look, and Life magazines to create an image that represents the African-American experience. The mixed media provided Bearden with the diverse elements to create a unified, yet still distinctly fragmented work of art. The Dove, named after a white dove - symbol of peace and harmony- combines a fragmentation, shifting scale and different orders. The artist created the essence of a vibrant neighborhood in such a way that the viewer’s eye is constantly on the move, jumping from the light to the dark areas and from one pattern to another.