Le Chemin (Meudon) is a large and important painting made by Albert Gleizes in the summer of 1911 at the height of his new friendship and collaboration with fellow Cubist Jean Metzinger. One of his largest and most ambitious paintings from this period, made in direct response to the inspiration of Metzinger, it was exhibited by Gleizes at the groundbreaking exhibition of the so-called 'Salon Cubists', Robert Delaunay, Fernand Léger, Henri Le Fauconnier and Gleizes, at the Salon des Indépendants in June 1911.
With its prismatic Cubism, shifting multiple perspective points and its holistic integration of landscape and figure centred around this lone figures journey through a path in the woods and through the heart of the picture, this work represents a radical extension of Gleizes' Cubism into an entirely new integrated and simultaneous style of composition. In this it reflects and in fact depicts the importance of the influence of what Gleizes himself later termed his 'rodage' with Metzinger at this time when the two artists, living in Meudon, were in almost daily contact with one another and developed an intimate understanding of each others art practice and ideas. Indeed, this scene with its view of a bend in the river depicts an idealised version of the landscape in Bas-Meudon through which Gleizes walked almost everyday on his journey to and from Metzinger's house.
At this time, the Parisian suburb of Meudon marked one of the borderlines between the city and the country. A familiar sight for Gleizes on his walk through the woods would have been the burgeoning factories then springing up on the other side of the river Seine. In Le Chemin (Meudon) Gleizes has consciously repressed such urbanised imagery in favour of creating a deliberately more idealised and even classical sense of landscape as if he were championing the values of traditionalism, the pastoral and the classical against those of the city and modernity.