The course of a painter in the representation of the landscape:
Georges Braque

Colloquium Landscape and Gardens - April 6th 2012

Study by François Murez -

Colloquium organized by the Association Saint-Fiacre Loire-Baratte

The presentation of this study is part of the third symposium "Landscape and Gardens" organized by the association Loire-Baratte. The general theme of this conference is as follows (from the program):

For a long time mistreated and trivialized, peri-urban areas, neither town nor country, is now the subject of special attention on behalf of numerous actors today: planners, geographers, architects, sociologists, naturalists, consum'actors
... All agree on the fact that its components are required to landscape diversity and balance of urban ecosystems. The new issues of the peri-urban appear in the light of the potential, expectations and societal behaviors conflicts of use and measures of the law Grenelle II ... The aim of the third conference of Landscape and Gardens is starting to win back the peri-urban areas around debate on two major current issues: urban agriculture and the process of green and blue frames.
Association Saint Fiacre - Loire Baratte

How to combine art with this approach? With what example?

In this program, we can identify three stages:

Nature is at the edge of cities
(All the images presented are works by Georges Braque)
Cause of urbanization, it moves away,
The return of Nature in the city.

Let us take these three stages.

1) Nature is at the edge of cities:

Stage one:
First, the antiquity. At that time, nature is seen outside of man. Appears the idea of use of nature and its modification to satisfy human needs.

With Christianity, nature is created, passive, functioning as God intended and the man can use and manipulate at will. However, it is for men not to make arbitrary, but to make good use.

With the discovery of new world and the emergence of the maritime great journeys of the eighteenth century, the curiosity naturalist is going to develop. The man and the artist discovered the seascapes ...

... Mountain landscapes.

2) As a result of urbanization, it moves away:

Second stage.
The society becomes industrial, the civilization, only material and physical. The man deviates from the Nature.

Cubism marked a drop of nature. Forms lose their regular security, they are crushed as debris, rebuilt according to a logic that is no longer that of the real.
René Huyghe

This is divorce with reality.

The fact that, from the twentieth century, art stopped more and more reproducing, and even reflecting reality the fact that it marked against it a distance and even a kind of hostility, is the sign of a break, a divorce between man and nature that in agrarian societies, were coordinated.
René Huyghe

3) The return of Nature in the city:

Stage three.
Does this return exist in painting? Let us look at Georges's Braque's.

The course of Georges Braque:

Olivier près de l’Estaque – 1907

In his beginnings, Braque practiced Fauvism. The nature is still very close to cities and artists love to walk and reproduce it following the impressionists. The colors are bright.

Paysage à la Ciotat - 1906

Fauvism calls the happiness to live, the happiness to share with the Nature.

Paysage de l’Estaque

Yet the painters already go away from their usual places and leave in the South to look for a violent chromaticism. The simple happiness of the proximity is not any more enough. The color is not enough either and gradually angles will appear.

Terrasse de l’hôtel Mistral

" Then, by 1907, that had to show themselves, in the fading color, these acute lines and these angles that later will be called Cubism "
Jean Paulhan

Le viaduc à l’Estaque - 1908

Braque therefore arrive at this second stage which lies in a certain distancing from Nature..

The winter 1908-1909 marks the beginning of a dialogue between Picasso and Braque, who confront the new problems raised by their paints.

"Our admiration is the link of this genius with the most important artistic revolution of the century, the decisive role played by Braque in the destruction of the imitation of objects "
André Malraux

Between the wars, Braque practices still lifes in studio

Pichet et fruits _______ Théière et Raisin

" I always work several canvases at once, (…) I put years to end them, but I look at them every day … I find that it is necessary to work slowly. The one who looks at the canvas redoes the same road as the artist and as it is the road which counts more that the thing, we are more interested in the route "
Georges Braque

Then comes the war, in this time of anxiety, Braque painted a series of austere paintings.

Poissons noirs - 1942 ________ Carafe et poissons

"Braque, he takes the time to ally. His paintings instead of succeeding, overlap; they are always recommenced never finished "
Jean Grenier

Intérieur à la palette - 1942

"Braque's painting is its own end and no life is possible outside of its two studios he had built so carefully in Paris and Varengeville ... "
Jean Leymarie

Table dressée devant la fenêtre

Braque is expanding its universe once confined to the studio, to the sea and the surrounding fields.

Paysages à Varengeville - (1955-1956)

Here is the painter's return to Nature, our third previous stage.

His solid and dense painting adapts to this country of plowing.

Braque said about the silt: " I like this word, it is the foundation of any art: the silt. This is the silt of the earth that the man was created. I try to pull my work of the silt of the earth. "

La charrue

Art and Hope

The modern civilization allowed the man a control of the outside world... In doing so, he works to destroy it in the exhausting or in the pollutant. It results (…) a negligence of the internal life reduced to the utilitarian practice of the rational faculties. We must now wait with hope, a return to requirements of the internal reality. The man has to reconquer his control and rediscover the meaning of its development.
René Huyghe : La nuit appelle l'aurore - 1980

A tire d’aile – 1956-1961

Since the dawn of the world until the end of the Middle Ages, the bird has ceased to be the center of beliefs and imagination of man. And then, suddenly, the bird is dead ... Certainly, we owe to Braque the return of the legendary Bird, but still this comforting proof that it is possible to relive the beginning of the world in this finishing world. The resurrection of the Bird is also the one of the Hope.
Franck Elgar, 1958

Thus, the painter, must still be it good, is not as is often facilitated by believing, apart from society. He is no stranger to life's common but feels the strongest and well before others. He is ahead of his contemporaries and anticipates the great movements of companies. So, the painter of good level is not except the society. He is not foreign to the life of all but feels it in most hardly and well before the others. He is ahead of on these contemporaries and anticipates the big movements of societies.

Bibliography :
Jean Paulhan, Braque le patron
André Malraux, Oraison funèbre de Braque
Jean Grenier, Braque dans son atelier
Jean Leymarie, Braque
Frank Elgar, Résurrection de l'oiseau

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