"Golfe Juan" by Raoul Dufy

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The selected work is "Golfe Juan," an oil-on-canvas painted by French artist Raoul Dufy in 1927. The painting measures 33" X 40" and is currently housed at the Marion Koogler McNay Art Museum. In the painting, a single tree is rooted on a foreground terrace with a view of a seaside village that extends out onto a peninsula. Dufy utilized numerous formal elements to give "Golfe Juan" depth and interest. Lines are abundant in the painting, adding depth, texture, shape, and even for separating large geographical forms such as land and sea. In the foreground, lines are used to accentuate the features of the tree. The thin, pointed leaves of the tree are composed of thin, straight brushstrokes of near equal length. The bark of the tree receives character and shape from longer, slightly curved, contour lines. The edges of the tree are contrasted from other objects in the painting by the use of dark black lines that lend to the tree's well-defined shape. Thin black lines form houses in the background, while thicker lines make up smokestacks that protrude amongst the trees and buildings. From a macro view, implied lines divide the painting into three sections with a 50/25/25 ratio starting from the bottom. The implied divisional lines consist of the foremost beach and the horizon above the peninsula and sea. Shapes and volume are used not only to form man-made objects in the painting, but as the foundation for natural landmarks as well. In the foreground, the cinder wall is intricately composed of various triangles and squares, all connected by lines. The abovementioned tree is also composed of shapes, with two, well-defined circles acting as knots in the wood. The houses in the village below are constructed with well-defined lines to represent three-dimensional forms, with cubes and elongated triangular forms composing roofs. A small dirt plot in the shape of a square dominates the area of the closest houses of the municipality. Color is used by Dufy not only to add...
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