The Great Forgotten Modernist

  1. Once the epitome of the British establishment, the Royal Academy dumbfounded the old guard some years ago by pioneering the rehabilitation of late Picasso. The Royal Academy is now courageously doing the same for late Braque, in a superb display of several dozen of his pictures of the 1940s and 1950s. And about time too. When I first published an article on Braque’s eight Ateliers1 in The Burlington Magazine some forty years ago, I assumed that they would take their place as the culminating achievements of Braque’s career: more explorative in their handling of space and more profound in their metaphysical concerns than all except his finest Cubist work.

    Somehow fame eluded them. Even in France these amazing works are no longer perceived as having contributed much to modernism. However John Golding’s fastidiously orchestrated show, which comes to the Menil Collection in Houston in April, should go a long way toward correcting this misperception. People are beginning to realize that P...

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