Georges Braque's Les Fruits Sur La Table, 1941, part of the Georges Braque Paintings: 1920-1960 selling exhibition at Sotheby's New York.
NEW YORK - In today’s marketplace, one would think that the work of the masters of Modernism is well-tread territory. Yet I’m of the belief that paintings from the mid and late career of Georges Braque, the co-inventor of Cubism and perhaps one of the most consequential revolutionaries in 20th Century European Art, have to date been neglected and under-valued.
The current retrospective of Braque’s work at the Grand Palais in Paris (the first of its kind in nearly 40 years) will hopefully give collectors, scholars and admirers a chance for a second look at the work of this giant of French modern art.
Georges Braque's Nature Morte À La Pipe, 1942, part of the Georges Braque Paintings: 1920-1960 selling exhibition at Sotheby's New York.
Typically a single work or two from this period comes to sale in a season amidst scores of other paintings. I believe to know and achieve the best understanding of and sensitivity to an artist’s work that it is crucial to see it in context. Our exhibition, Georges Braque Paintings: 1920-1960, I hope offers that opportunity.
An installation view of the Georges Braque Paintings: 1920-1960 selling exhibition at Sotheby's New York.
What you will find on display in this exhibition is the richness of his exploration in one of the most humble of subjects, the still life. Braque draws well upon the lessons of Cezanne: the bending of perspective, flattening of planes and balancing of the inherent contradiction of painting; the representation of three-dimensional space with the reality of a two-dimensional surface; the duality of depicting the intangible substance of light and space with the very real medium of oil painting.
Georges Braque's Nature Morte Au Poisson, 1936, part of the Georges Braque Paintings: 1920-1960 selling exhibition at Sotheby's New York.
Just as one sees the bold and forceful Spanish character in the works of his contemporaries Picasso and Miró, we see in Braque a certain elegance, understated color patterns and delicate surfaces that are so characteristically French.