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Georges Braque

/Works and biography

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The Bowl of Grapes (Le Compotier de raisins), 1926
Oil with pebbles and sand on canvas, 100 x 80.8 cm
Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice 76.2553 PG 8
© Georges Braque, by SIAE 2008


After his return from military service in 1917 Georges Braque developed the subjects and style of his prewar period. His use of collage in the teens provided formal innovations in paintings of the twenties. In still lifes he constructed objects with broad, frontal planes that remain discrete and are often vividly colored or decoratively patterned. In subject matter, this work belongs to Braque’s gueridon (round pedestal table) and mantelpiece series of about 1918 to 1929. It displays a rigorous and complex organization of shape and line combined with the sensuous appeal of rich color and a masterful handling of paint. The structuring grid is softened by broad curves and clusters of circular forms, and in peripheral areas enriched by the textural variation provided by the addition of sand to pigment. Reminiscent of Paul Cézanne’s still lifes are the heavy contours and voluminous presence of the objects, the tilted planes, inconsistent perspective, and discontinuous background lines.

credits: Hangar Design Group