Apple Tree, Pointilist Version Piet Mondrian Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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This painting from 1908-1909 was produced using oil on cardboard and is one of a number of experimental tree depictions by artist Piet Mondrian in the early 20th century.

Mondrian used a pointilist style for this painting which involves dabbing a series of dots of paint onto a canvas and slowly creating form over time. This painstaking technique was most famously used by Georges Seurat but here we see this skilled Dutchman making use of it in his own work. He varied his style considerably over just a few years whilst producing different depictions of trees and would slowly move towards a great level of abstraction, where the individual plants would become harder and harder to identify. This fast development is typical for a young artist, where they are unsure at that stage about what there signature style is to be and prefer not to be tied down at this early stage.

The trunk and branches of this tree are formed in a similar way to some of his other artworks from this period, but it is the blue tones behind it which is where the divergences can be found. We can make out each and every individual stroke of the brush where white dots and blue strokes are used together. The ability to see this level of detail is one of the advantanges of the pointilist approach, and is why many viewers will stand close to these artworks in order to pick out these individual touches. In other cases, colours are blended into gradients to make everything smoother, but often losing the ability to spot the artist at work.

This artwork, loosely titled as Apple Tree, Pointilist Version, can be found in the collection of the Dallas Museum of Art, having been gifted it through a private collection. This institution hosts an impressively varied collection that will interest most art followers, with a good number of movements, styles and global cultures covered. In terms of artists related to Mondrian, you can also find the likes of Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Edward Hopper and Frederic Edwin Church here too, though it would be pointless trying to summarise such a large collection in a single paragraph.

Apple Tree, Pointilist Version in Detail Piet Mondrian