Gambling and art may not go hand in hand, but for centuries many famous artists have used gambling in their art works. Some of these paintings are even very well known and are very expensive. Therefore, we decided to take a closer look at some of the most popular gambling-themed paintings in history.
In the era of online gambling, we are a bit forgetting the history of gambling. Gambling has existed since ancient times; it has been believed that playing rumors began in China and eventually spread throughout the world. When the popularity of the dice game declined during the 15th century, rummy became a more popular form of gambling. Although only reserved for the upper classes, but in the mid-15th-century gambling, especially card games such as the poker and domino99 is a normal thing for men to do.
Gambling Inspired Works of Art
Not just painting people playing rummy, but gambling inspires some of the greatest works of art. In fact, there are many amazing gambling-themed paintings throughout history, so we decided to name some of the most famous works in history.
1. Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (The Cardsharps)
Painted by Baroque artist Iltalia Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (The Cardsharps) was made in the 16th century, around 1594. This painting depicts two boys playing rummy, one of whom has an extra card behind his body. Also, there was an old man looking over the shoulder of one of the players who did not have an extra card, gesturing for cunning on a boy he knew. They are bound to a life drama that takes place, which is part of a bigger game.
2. Georges de La Tour (The Cheat with the Ace of Clubs)
Created by Georges de La Tour between 1626 and 1629, The Cheat with the Ace of Clubs depicts the scene of two women playing rummy with a man, who uses devious methods to cheat and keeps two aces in his belt. At the same time, the servant and the woman on the right show signs of anxiety and suspicion. This part is very lively because it shows movement that signals the next step. The latest version of the original painting, The Cheat with Ace of Diamonds, was made in 1635, with some differences.
3. Jan Steen (Argument Over a Card Game)
The next work on our list is owned by the Dutch Golden Age. This work is one of the most famous paintings of all time, Argument Over a Card Game, painted by Jan Steen. This iconic work was made in the 17th century and portrays the art of gambling, turning it into drama through a classic playing game. In his paintings, Steen paints people’s daily lives, and turns chaotic situations into real works of art.
4. Paul Cézanne (The Card Players)
The Card Players represent a series of oil paintings, made by Paul Cézanne. Cézanne is a French Post-Impressionist artist who produced several paintings and conducted studies on famous card players. In total, there are 5 paintings made in this series, made in the early to mid-1980s period. Each Rummy Player in Cézanne’s painting depicts drunk farmers at the tavern, players who smoke while playing, rummy is the only way for them to establish communication.
5. Cassius Marcellus Coolidge (Dogs Playing Poker)
The Dogs Playing Poker painting series, by Cassius Marcellus Coolidge, is a very famous gambling-themed work of art, for people of all ages and backgrounds. The artwork is Dogs Playing Poker, which is the sixteenth sequence of oil paintings, made from the mid-1900s to the mid-1910s, requested by Brown & Bigelow to advertise cigars. All parts of the painting are anthropomorphism of dogs playing poker. The paintings are widespread throughout the United States.
6. Fernand Leger (Soldiers Playing Cards)
Inspired by Picasso and Cézanne, Fernand Leger earned a track record as the 4th member of Cubism. His main work, Soldier Playing Cards reflects his interest in the use of machines in World War I. Leger combines Cubism with the aesthetics of the machine, while also alluding to the mechanical nature of war and the anonymity of volunteers. This painting was made in 1917, when Leger was treated in Paris after the Battle of Verdun, this is one of his best works of art.