george braque cubist portraits style
After a period of healing, Braque returned to his artistic ability in the Cubist movement. Braque entered what is called a synthetic phase of Cubism. He began to use more colors and to represent objects through large planes. Braque created “Woman Musician” in 1917, which exhibited the geometric planes and strong colors of synthetic Cubism (Braque). He began to stray away from Cubism and began to draw with a flowing technique such as the smooth framework of “Still Life with Playing Cards.” After this move, Braque experimented with pictures of pagan women, pedestal tables, birds, ancient Greek pottery, and figures. Braque finally won the Carnegie Prize in 1937. He became a world-renowned artist and in 1961 he received the highest honor—he became the first living artist to have his works displayed in the Louvre.
By 1911, Braque and Picasso paired up and the analytical phase became full blown. “Man and Guitar” is an example of this phase. It is characterized by the natural colors of brown, gray, and green (Braque). It seems to have many views, the space is flattened, and it has a kind of broken contour. Braque began to use the stenciling technique to create a feeling of autonomy as such in “The Portuguese” lettering. He also created what is exclaimed the first pasted-paper picture by using wallpaper in “Fruit Dish and Glass.”
During the inter-war years, Braque established himself as France’s leading painter, the inheritor of the national virtues and depository of the classical tradition, which he later defined in his Cahier de Georges Braque: 1917-1947. Along with this Neoclassicism went the group of works inspired by the art and culture of ancient Greece: the etchings for Hesiod’s Theogons (1931), the four remarkable engraved plaster casts (platres graves) on mythological themes, also made in 1931 (Herakles, Aime Maeght Collection, Paris), and most of the sculptures.
A key figure in modern French painting, the artist Georges Braque is chiefly remembered for his abstract art, notably his pioneering work on Cubism – one of the most revolutionary and influential movements of modern art – which he founded in the late 1900s in collaboration with Pablo Picasso (1881-1973). Initially a follower of Fauvism, Braque was greatly influenced by the work of Paul Cezanne, which led him to initiate a type of prototype Cubist painting in landscapes he completed at L’Estaque. After this he worked closely with Picasso with whom he formulated Analytical Cubism and later, Synthetic Cubism. Among Braque‘s most notable paintings are: Houses at L’Estaque (1908, Berne); Big Nude (1907-8, private collection); The Portuguese (1911, Kunstmuseum, Basel); Man with a Guitar (1911, Museum of Modern Art NY); The Musician (1917-18, Kunstmuseum, Basel); Fruit on a Tablecloth with a Fruit Dish 1925, (Musee National d’Art Moderne, Paris); and Woman with a Mandolin (1937, MoMA, NY). One of the great abstract painters of the 20th century, Braque was exceptionally innovative in his early career, producing works involving collage, papier colle, printmaking and sculpture. He was also influenced by Primitivism/Primitive Art. His favourite genre, however, remained still life (nature morte), as exemplified by numerous Cubist works, his Gueridon series (1927-30) and his Atelier series (1949-55). Indeed he must be among the best still life painters of the modern age. He was associated with the Ecole de Paris.
In 1931, Georges Braque added to the painting work, and began to do sculpture pieces as well. He gained some recognition with this, as he showcased a few pieces he had carved in an exhibit in 1933. In 1937 he had gained international success, as some of his works were displayed not only in Paris and around Europe, but even had made their way in to the US, and different art museums and exhibits in the US.
Early in his life, Georges Braque wanted to focus on painting, so moved from the smaller town he was born in, to Paris. This not only allowed him to be around more painters of the period, it also allowed him to see what was out there, and what styles were prominent during his time. Prior to painting at the Academy of Humbert, he apprenticed for a short period of time with a house decorator.
“What greatly attracted me – and it was the main line of advance of Cubism – was how to give material expression to this new space of which I had an inkling. So I began to paint chiefly still lifes, because in nature there is a tactile, I would almost say a manual space… that was the earliest Cubist painting – the quest for space.” Georges Braque
Georges Braque’s Large Nude, as well as Picasso’s Demoiselles D’ Avignon, was quite a departure from the usual depiction of women. Braque’s female nude was formed from geometric shapes and used a limited palette of colors to create the illusion of mass and weight. It was displaying a growing fascination with geometric patterns and solid, defined forms.
In Head of a Woman (1909) he kept eliminating the space and unfolding the object, using a limited palette of colors- mainly browns and grays, but yet it’s not as dark and monochromatic as his subsequent works.
Woman with a Mandolin (1910), Woman reading (1911), Girl with a cross (1911) and Woman with a Guitar painted in 1913, using oil and charcoal The object is depicted on the canvas surface from all sides at the same time, which approaches abstraction. Like in Braque’s still -lifes the woman’s figure breaks down into its different components, which are joined together again in a new arrangement. Background and figure fuse into a web of vertical and horizontal lines. Some fragments are recognizable – like an eye, lips, hair, a necklace with a cross or a guitar, while others are so integrated into the abstract space of the background that they are barely discernible. Despite the reduced palette of colors (a narrow range of ochres, grays and browns) Braque achieves luminous effects by using a technique of small brushstrokes and loose facture.
Even at that time, he was inspired by Cezanne more, than by Van Gogh. Braque became pretty successful at selling his fauvist paintings, but soon everything had changed because Picasso came to Paris.
In front of the viewer, there were some extremely abstract, coloristic and rhythmic surfaces enclosed in rectangular or oval frames. The periods of his creative work completely coincided with the phases of the development of cubism. Well, because he shaped them. Together with Picasso, of course. During the stage of synthetic cubism, Braque, like Picasso fully breaks up with the traditional “nature”.