Glass Painting with the Sun (Small Pleasures) Wassily Kandinsky Buy Art Prints Now
from Amazon

* As an Amazon Associate, and partner with Google Adsense and Ezoic, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
Email: [email protected] / Phone: +44 7429 011000

Kandinsky surprises us here with this 1910 landcape painting that actually was painted directly onto a glass panel. The Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus hosts this piece, alongside an impressive wider collection of the artist's work.

We find the cartoon-like abstract approach used by the artist during this period of his career within this painting. A castle dominates the central area, sitting on a tall hill which sweeps across the composition. Behind it is a larger town at the top of the piece. Down below are many abstract lines that appear to be figures making their way around the countryside, though some maybe on horseback. There are wavy lines in the foreground which are hard to decipher and would need an expert on this period of his career to perhaps decipher that meaning. There is then a plethora of colour to the right hand side as well, though again it is not easy to understand this part of the painting.

The artist then continues onwards, painting the frame as well and merging artwork and frame together into a single entity. This might surprise you to see this, but actually this has been done a number of times by other artists. It is another avenue of creativity for an artist to consider and also the presentation of their completed piece will be particularly important to them, to avoid the qualities of the artwork being damaged visually by a poorly chosen frame. Kandinsky therefore uses tones from the painting to cover the slim outer layer, mainly using yellows and purples. He does not attempt to produce any sort of objects here, just essentially carry the background colour scheme across onto it.

To see other ways in which one might decorate the area around a painting, you will enjoy the work of Jan van Eyck, who would actually paint the frame himself, often incorporating sculptured elements of his own making. This was taking things to a new level, and underlined the man's undoubted genius. You will see plenty of examples of that within the small array of Van Eyck paintings, and he also handled the production of the frame itself too, carefully selecting from a wide selection of materials, with his choice depending on the artistic qualities of each piece individually. Alternatively, check out Kahlo's The Frame, where the artist re-purposed a photo frame bought in a local Mexican market to insert her own painting inside.