Most of the artworks found in this book are simply done, without too much detail. They are more about experimenting with different ideas and getting them down on paper for future reference, similar to how we all take digital photographs today in our daily lives. He would not intend these drawings to be seen as presentable, completed artworks in their own right, but rather were an expression of interest in a particular item. In this case, for example, he focuses very clearly on two heads, leaving out their bodies entirely. Even the sides of their faces are missing, as he perhaps explores an idea that is intended to help him later on, perhaps when commencing a related oil painting. The two angles of these faces suggest that they are not sat together at the time, but instead are just placed together on the same page as Cezanne takes on a couple of portraits in close succession.
We have seen from the earlier drawings of Michelangelo about how artists would use every inch of their sketchbooks in order to try out different ideas. There was not always meant to be a connection or consistency between the different elements on the page, and it was all about making as much use of the resources as possible. Whilst taking great pride in their work, there was never any expectation that anyone would see these preparatory works, and so they did not need to be organised or presentable. It is only the later success of their work that led to us looking deeper into their careers and attempting to document each and every creative item of their oeuvre. In recent years there has been a growing interest in exhibiting the drawings of famous painters and sculptors, with Cezanne's widely dispersed after most of his sketchbooks were broken up into individual pages.
The original book can be found at the National Gallery of Art in the US, and this institution also holds a number of Cezanne paintings within their collection. The overall offering of this important institution runs into the many thousands of items, covering all manner of different art movements from around the world, as well as a large number of other antiquities. Some of the highlights, for those with a broad interest in art history, would include the likes of The House of Cards by Jean Siméon Chardin, Girl with the Red Hat by Vermeer, The Japanese Footbridge by Claude Monet and also The Maas at Dordrecht by Aelbert Cuyp. Anyone interested in European and American art will find plenty to satisfy their tastes in this fine establishment.