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Charcoal

Charcoal is one of the first tools humans used to make artwork, appearing in cave paintings dating back 28,000 years. Artists have refined the medium from burnt wood to finely-ground charcoal bound with wax or gum into sticks, crayons, and pencils. During the Renaissance, charcoal was often used to create gestural sketches to prepare for a painting, but charcoal’s range of expression makes it a beautiful medium for finished work — from the gentle ochre used in Da Vinci’s Study of a Woman's Hands to the intense black of Redon’s spiders.

The Rhine at Duisburg

The Rhine at Duisburg

Paul Klee,1937
Study of a Woman's Hands

Study of a Woman's Hands

Leonardo da Vinci,1490
Trees on a Yellow Background

Trees on a Yellow Background

Odilon Redon,1901
Illustration for Souz Molodyozhi

Illustration for Souz Molodyozhi

Olga Rozanova,1913
Illustration for Souz Molodyozhi

Illustration for Souz Molodyozhi

Olga Rozanova,1913
The Crying Spider

The Crying Spider

Odilon Redon,1881
Christ In Silence

Christ In Silence

Odilon Redon,1897
Tears

Tears

Odilon Redon,1878
The Cube

The Cube

Odilon Redon,1880
The Smiling Spider

The Smiling Spider

Odilon Redon,1881
Pearl Oyster

Pearl Oyster

Mikhail Vrubel,1904
After the Concert, at the Fireplace

After the Concert, at the Fireplace

Mikhail Vrubel,1905
Studies of Self Portrait

Studies of Self Portrait

Ferdinand Hodler,1911
Unemployed

Unemployed

Ferdinand Hodler,1891
The Halberdier

The Halberdier

Ferdinand Hodler,1895
Vase, Palette, and Mandolin

Vase, Palette, and Mandolin

Georges Braque,1944
Music (Sketch)

Music (Sketch)

Henri Matisse,1907
Young Woman Reading (Ines)

Young Woman Reading (Ines)

Umberto Boccioni,1909-1910
Pier and Ocean

Pier and Ocean

Piet Mondrian,1914
Village Church

Village Church

Piet Mondrian,1898

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