Paul Cézanne
"Apples, Peaches, Pears, and Grapes "

One could think asking ground school students to paint a still life is asking too much of them.But by integrating the children in the creation process, they will be even more motivated and curious to see what their work will look like when they’re finished.

Further material for this article.

Paul Cézanne - "Apples, Peaches, Pears, and Grapes "

Original student’s picture

Artistic painting with the Pelikan K12 paint box

In this issue of Pelikan K12 – the original, we would like to present you an exclusive recommendation for your next art lesson, working with the Pelikan paint box. Our focus of interest is the work of the artist Paul Cézanne.

“Apples, Peaches, Pears, and Grapes” (1879-1880)

Course of the teaching unit Paul Cézanne – “Apples, Peaches, Pears and Grapes”

One could think asking ground school students to paint a still life is asking too much of them. The children have to concentrate on one object and have to try to copy it as good as they can. You need a lot of patience for this task. But by integrating the children in the creation process, they will be even more motivated and curious to see what their work will look like when they’re finished.



  1. Download the material pack “Paul Cézanne: Apples, Peaches, Pears and Grapes” from the internet.
  2. Print out the download template “empty basket” or draw a basket on the black board.

  1. Drawing of an empty basket on the black board or as a download template.

    Discuss with your students how the basket can be filled, e.g. with:
    • their favorite fruits
    • fruits of the season
    • fruits easy to draw
    The answers to the question on how the students store fruit at home can also be very interesting.
    Try to integrate your students in the planning actively:
    • Let them take fruit with from home, place it in a basket and let them try to copy it.
    • You bring a basket with from home, place some fruit in nicely and let the students copy it.
    • The students bring some fruit with to school from home and have a healthy breakfast all together, put the fruit in a basket and then let them paint a still life.
    • Differentiation material: The students work with the download templates and this way can create their “own” basket and can copy it or color it afterwards.
    There are many possibilities on how to introduce this lesson’s topic.
    Tip: It is important to always give clear instructions! So, choose “your” way of proceeding and combine the materials individually.
  2. After the planning phase comes the practical part. The students work on their pictures.
    First let them create a draft in black and white of the basket they are going to paint. Then all the fruit in the basket can be colored with the water paints. Afterwards, let the students outline the fruit with a black marker, e.g. with a Colorella Duo.

    Black and white draft of the fruit basket. Fruit basket in color.

  3. As a pop-art variation, it is advisable to not to copy the fruits exactly as they are, but to paint them as abstract as possible. For this, color each fruit in the basket in only one color, like in our example, the blue banana and the magenta red pineapple.

    The pop-art variation has an especially good effect when drawn in color.The download template “differences”.

    Discuss with your students which colors fit best for this form of abstraction. Perhaps the students will find other color combinations. The special effect of such a picture becomes even clearer by comparing the different working methods with each other. You can explore these effects with your students by downloading the template “differences” from the material pack. You can print it out on a transparency for demonstration reasons.
  4. A conversation on the different designing possibilities with all the pros and cons can intensify this lesson. Eating the fruit together can be a pleasant ending for this lesson.


Differentiation possibilities

For a good introduction into the lesson, your students will need a basket that will be filled with fruits later on. If the students have difficulties in drawing one on their own, some help can be offered. There are two templates in the material pack. For one, there is the basket in outlines only, and for the other with structure and color. You can also print it out in black and white and let the kids overpaint it with water paints.

The basket in outlines and as a template.

The kids are supposed to design their own fruit basket. As a help, you can offer your students either single fruit images or one of many sorts of fruits together, to color.

You can offer your students a printout of single fruits or a group of fruits together.

We also offer you the pictures of the fruits in color. This way you have the possibility to use the pictures as demonstration subjects. Hang the images on the black board as a support for those students who have difficulties in imagining the colors and shapes of the fruit.

The printouts in color can be a help to the students when copying the fruits.

A design of a fruit basket in black and white can also be found in the templates of the material pack. You will find two different versions on the page. The upper template is easier to color (the cherries and the strawberries are missing here), the fruit basket on the bottom of the page is more complex.

There are two versions of the fruit basket, one also completely designed as differentiation material. It only has to be colored.

Students’ works as demonstration material

The students of the following paintings worked together in team work. They brought a fruit basket with from home and copied it together. Afterwards, they enjoyed the fruit together, as the topic of the lesson was “a healthy breakfast”.

These exemplary students’ works can be used as demonstration material.

About Paul Cézanne

  • 1839 On January 19, 1839 Paul Cézanne was born as the oldest son of the merchant and banker Louis-Auguste Cézanne and Anne-Elisabeth Aubert in Aix-en-Provence. His parents only got married in 1844.
  • 1849-1858 He went to school in Aix-en-Provence at the Ècole Saint-Joseph and the Collège Bourbon and grew up in wealthy circumstances.
  • 1859-1861 Cézanne studied law by request of his father. But while doing so he also took lessons in drawing and painting at the town’s independent school of arts.
  • 1861 His father gave in and allowed Cézanne to be a painter. Paul did nude studies at the Académie Suisse in Paris and met the painter Camille Pissarro (1830-1883). But he didn’t feel comfortable in Paris, had depressions and returned to Aix-en-Provence at the end of the year, where he began to work at his father’s bank.
  • 1862 Cézanne couldn’t fit into the life of a banker and traveled back to Paris. His father supported him financially anyway. He applied for the School of Fine Arts, “Ècole des Beaux-Arts”, and was turned down, so he returned to the Académie Suisse. There he met Edouard Manet (1832-1883), Claude Monet (1840-1926) and Auguste Renoir (1841-1919). He copied these great artists in the Louvre.
  • 1863 His works were turned down at the annual exhibition of the Ècole des Beaux Arts, but the “Salon des Refusés”, the drawing-room of the rejected, showed his paintings. His early works were influenced by hard contrasts and dark colors.
  • 1869 He met his future wife, the book-binder Hortense Fiquet, in Paris.
  • 1870-1871 During the German-French war, Cézanne and Fiquet stayed in the fisher’s village L’Estaque near Marseille, where Paul dedicated his time to landscape painting. After the war was over they moved back to Paris.
  • 1872 His son Paul was born and the family moved from Paris to Pontoise in the Valley of Oise to Pissarro, who taught Cézanne the way of impressionistic painting. From now on, his works are lighter in color and have less hard contrasts.
  • 1874 For the first time, some of his paintings were shown in a group exhibition.
  • 1875-1876 Cézanne moved back to Aix-en-Provence.
  • 1877 16 of his works were presented at the exhibition of the impressionists.
  • 1878-1885 He spent a lot of time in Aix-en-Provence and L’Estaque. He painted still lives and portraits. Unlike his collegues, he was not willing give up the shapes in his works for the colors.
  • 1886 Cézanne and Fiquet got married in spring and his father died in fall leaving him a great fortune.
  • 1887-1899 Cézanne lived in Paris and in the Provence. He became more and more an outsider. In his works he showed a great passion to clear lines and a clean structure, which distincted him from other impressionists. He gained more and more acknowledgement and became even more famous. His works began to be exhibited internationally.
  • 1895 Cézanne had his first own exhibition in a gallery in Paris.
  • 1899-1906 Cézanne stayed almost exceptionally in Aix-en-Provence, his family stayed Paris.
  • 1906 Paul Cézanne died on pneumonia that he got from a storm which surprised him while he was working on a painting.