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Patrick Henry Bruce



Patrick Henry Bruce (1881 November 12, 1936) was an American modernist painter who practiced a form of cubism.

A descendant of Patrick Henry, Bruce is often associated with Synchromism and Orphism but, although he was personally very close to Sonia and Robert Delaunay, he never belonged to any school. His work was admired by Marcel Duchamp and may have influenced the style adopted by Matisse, his former teacher, in executing the Barnes Foundation murals. Bruce knew many of the leading artists of the early twentieth century avant garde, and regularly exhibited in the Salon d'Automne.

The style of his mature work anticipated the Purism developed by Leger and Ozenfant in the 1920s. In his paintings of 1918 and later, hard-edged geometric forms are arranged as on a tabletop and rendered in evenly applied, flat colors. Intensely self-critical, Bruce destroyed a great many of his paintings, and only about one hundred works remain. His death was by suicide, in New York City in 1936.


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