Composition in blue tones (predominant), gray, earthy, green, violet, lilac, roses, black, orange, ochre and white. Smooth texture and marked brushstrokes. Groups of women crying in despair, children killed, groups of horsemen of the Apocalypse and carrion beasts, in extreme realismtcomposition. In the upper third, groups of women facing forward, faces covered by their hands, hiding the tears; the highlight is a kneeling figure on her back with a violet dress, bent over her dead son, and next a figure facing forward and holding on her lap a dead child; in the center, a horse riding to the right, ridden by an undefined figure, coming undone transparencies; by the head of the animal, a seated figure holding in her lap the dead child with yellow dress, and just below, another dead figure, lying on the ground; on the right, two embraced figures bent over another dead one, both dressed in white. In the central part, the groups succeed in various positions, especially: three representations of mounted knights, a "Pietà" dressed in light blue, near the center, where we see a kneeling group in a circle with arms raised as if crying to heaven. To the right, two figures kneeling, embraced, and the along the lateral edge, boy crying with his face covered. At the bottom on the left, a group of desperate women in prayer, some with their faces toward the sky and others with their faces covered by black straight hair, symbolizing mourning. A "Pietà" kneeling in profile to the right, having by her side another "Pietà" sitting facing forward and bent over a child who she hugs tenderly. On the right, a group of beasts showing claws: spotted hiena, dark hiena and streaked hiena. Geometrized background in blue, violet and lilac tones at the base, lightening up and interconnecting with geometrized lower figures which integrate the whole of the composition.


  • Title: War
  • Creator Lifespan: 1903-12-29 - 1962-12-06
  • Creator Nationality: Brazilian
  • Creator Gender: Male
  • Creator Death Place: Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Creator Birth Place: Brodowski, São Paulo, Brazil
  • Date: 1952
  • Location Created: Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil
  • Physical Dimensions: w1058 x h1400cm without frame
  • Provenance: João Candido Portinari
  • Rights: João Candido Portinari
  • External Link: Projeto Portinari
  • Theme: Nature:Animals:wild animal, social:war, social:death, Nature:Animals:horse, human figure:group:men, human figure:group:women, human figure:group:children
  • Technique: oil
  • Signature: Signed and dated in bottom left corner "PORTINARI RIO 1952 1956"
  • Painter: Candido Portinari
  • Number: FCO 3799
  • Notes: Support is waterproofed plywood made of cedar from a ship, prepared at the Rio de Janeiro Yacht Club. The panel was painted in 14 independents, 2200 x 5000 cm modules, except those at the top edge, whose irregular top edge parallels the inclination of the wall for which the panel was designed.
  • Function: Work executed to decorate the headquarters of the United Nations, New York, USA.
  • Catalogue Raisonné: CR-3719

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