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Artists Georges Braque
Georges Braque Photo

Georges Braque

French Painter, Collagist, Draftsman, Printmaker, and Sculptor

Movement: Cubism

Born: May 13, 1882 - Argenteuil, France

Died: August 31, 1963 - Paris, France

Georges Braque Timeline

Quotes

"One must not imitate what one wants to create."
Georges Braque
"How is one to talk about colour? .... Those who have eyes know just how irrelevant words are to what they see.
Georges Braque
"To work from nature is to improvise."
Georges Braque
"One must beware of an all-purpose formula that will serve to interpret the other arts as well as reality, and that instead of creating will only produce a style, or rather a stylization."
Georges Braque
"Art is made to disturb, science reassures."
Georges Braque
"[Braque was] a model of everything that is skill, serenity, and reflection."
Joan Miró

"Truth exists, only falsehood has to be invented."

Georges Braque Signature

Synopsis

Georges Braque was at the forefront of the revolutionary art movement of Cubism. Braque's work throughout his life focused on still lifes and means of viewing objects from various perspectives through color, line, and texture. While his collaboration with Pablo Picasso and their Cubist works are best known, Braque had a long painting career that continued beyond Cubism. Braque was also often dedicated to quiet periods in his studio rather than to being a personality in the art world.

Key Ideas

Though Braque started out as a member of the Fauves, he began developing a Cubist style after meeting Pablo Picasso. While their paintings shared many similarities in palette, style and subject matter, Braque stated that unlike Picasso, his work was "devoid of iconological commentary," and was concerned purely with pictorial space and composition.
Braque sought balance and harmony in his compositions, especially through papier collés, a pasted paper collage technique that Picasso and Braque invented in 1912. Braque, however, took collage one-step further by gluing cut-up advertisements into his canvases. This foreshadowed modern art movements concerned with critiquing media, such as Pop art.
Braque stenciled letters onto paintings, blended pigments with sand, and copied wood grain and marble to achieve great levels of dimension in his paintings. His depictions of still lifes are so abstract that they border on becoming patterns that express an essence of the objects viewed rather than direct representations.

Biography

Georges Braque Photo

Childhood

Georges Braque was guided from a young age toward creative painting techniques. His father managed a decorative painting business and Braque's interest in texture and tactility perhaps came from working with him as a decorator. In 1899, at age seventeen, Braque moved from Argenteuil into Paris, accompanied by friends Othon Friesz and Raoul Dufy.

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Georges Braque Biography Continues

Important Art by Georges Braque

The below artworks are the most important by Georges Braque - that both overview the major creative periods, and highlight the greatest achievements by the artist.

Houses of l'Estaque (1908)
Artwork Images

Houses of l'Estaque (1908)

Artwork description & Analysis: Braque's paintings made over the summer of 1908 at l'Estaque are considered the first Cubist paintings. After being rejected by the Salon d'Automne, they were fortunately exhibited that fall at Daniel-Henri Kahnweiler's Paris gallery. These simple landscape paintings showed Braque's determination to break imagery into dissected parts. The brown and green palette here also predicts a palette that Braque employed in many paintings to come.

Oil on canvas - Museum of Art, Berne

Clarinet and Bottle of Rum on the Mantlepiece (1911)
Artwork Images

Clarinet and Bottle of Rum on the Mantlepiece (1911)

Artwork description & Analysis: Clarinet and Bottle of Rum on the Mantlepiece is typical of Braque's subject matter, yet is unique as an early example of collage. In this painting, he stenciled the word "valse" to mean "waltz," in continuation with his interest in musical themes and instruments. "RHU" are first three letters for the French word for rum. Again using an exploded perspective, the viewer barely perceives a scroll in the lower right corner, which could allude to a human head, a violin or cello, or the mantelpiece in the title.

Oil on canvas - Tate Collection, London

Bottle and Fishes (1910-12)
Artwork Images

Bottle and Fishes (1910-12)

Artwork description & Analysis: Braque depicted both bottles and fishes throughout his entire painting career, and these objects stand as markers to differentiate his various styles. Bottle and Fishes is an excellent example of Braque's foray into Analytic Cubism, while he worked closely with Picasso. This painting has the restricted characteristic earth tone palette rendering barely perceptible objects as they disintegrate along a horizontal plane. While there are some diagonal lines, Braque's early paintings tended to work vertically or horizontally.

Oil on canvas - Tate London

More Georges Braque Artwork and Analysis:



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Influences and Connections

Influences on Artist
Artists, Friends, Movements
Influenced by Artist
Artists, Friends, Movements
Georges Braque
Interactive chart with Georges Braque's main influences, and the people and ideas that the artist influenced in turn.
View Influences Chart

Artists

Paul CézannePaul Cézanne
Jean-Baptiste-Camille CorotJean-Baptiste-Camille Corot
Henri MatisseHenri Matisse
Gustave CourbetGustave Courbet
Édouard VuillardÉdouard Vuillard

Personal Contacts

Pablo PicassoPablo Picasso
Juan GrisJuan Gris
André DerainAndré Derain
Henri LaurensHenri Laurens
Erik SatieErik Satie

Movements

ImpressionismImpressionism
Post-ImpressionismPost-Impressionism
FauvismFauvism
African ArtAfrican Art
ExpressionismExpressionism

Influences on Artist
Georges Braque
Georges Braque
Years Worked: 1899 - 1962
Influenced by Artist

Artists

Marsden HartleyMarsden Hartley
Arthur DoveArthur Dove
Wayne ThiebaudWayne Thiebaud
Peter DoigPeter Doig

Personal Contacts

Leonide MassineLeonide Massine
Paul RosenbergPaul Rosenberg
Ambroise VollardAmbroise Vollard
Daniel-Henry KahnweilerDaniel-Henry Kahnweiler

Movements

CubismCubism
Abstract ExpressionismAbstract Expressionism
Pop ArtPop Art

Useful Resources on Georges Braque

Videos

Books

Articles

More

The books and articles below constitute a bibliography of the sources used in the writing of this page. These also suggest some accessible resources for further research, especially ones that can be found and purchased via the internet.

biography

Georges Braque, A Life Recomended resource

By Alex Danchev

Picasso and Braque Pioneering Cubism

By William Rubin

paintings

Braque (Modern Masters Series)

By Karen Wilkin

Braque Cameo Recomended resource

By Jose Maria Faerna

More Interesting Books about Georges Braque
Georges Braque: He Changed Western Painting For Ever

By Richard Dorment
The Telegraph
September 23, 2013

The Other Father of Cubism Recomended resource

By Roberta Smith
The New York Times
October 13, 2011

After Him, Who?

By Alex Danchev
The Guardian
May 6, 2005

From Braque's Later Years, The Products of Slow Time

By John Russell
The New York Times
February 16, 1997

documentary films

Picasso and Braque Go to the Movies

By Martin Scorsese

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Edited and published by The Art Story Contributors

" Artist Overview and Analysis". [Internet]. . TheArtStory.org
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