Georges Braque (1882 - 1963)

Tête violette – Grands livres illustrés

Purple Head – Large Illustrated Albums
    Coloured lithograph on Arches paper, 2/75
  • Printed by Mourlot Frères, Paris, published by Adrien Maeght, Paris, 1958
Image 19 × 25 cm
Sheet 38 × 31 cm
Signatures and Inscriptions
Signed ΄G. Braque΄ (lower right), numbered ΄2/75΄ (lower left)

Galerie Adrien Maeght, Paris

Private collection


Andros, Museum of Contemporary Art-Basil and Elise Goulandris Foundation, Glancing at the Century, 28 June – 20 September 1998, pp. 58-59, ill. p. 59


Antoine Tudal and Roger Vieillard, Georges Braque: Grands Livres Illustrés, exh. cat., Paris, Adrien Maeght, 1958

Werner Hofmann and Gerd Hatje (eds.), L’oeuvre graphique de Georges Braque, Lausanne, La Guilde du Livre, 1961, no. 84

Fernand Mourlot and Francis Ponge, Braque Lithographe, Monte Carlo, André Sauret, 1963, no. 53

Dora Vallier, Braque, l’oeuvre gravé, Paris, Flammarion, 1982, no. 134.2 (another impression illustrated)

Miguel Orozco, The Complete Prints of Georges Braque, Catalogue raisonné, academia. edu, 25 September 2018, no. LS364, ill. p. 191 (another impression illustrated)

Current location
Basil & Elise Goulandris Foundation, Athens
Floor -1 (temporary exhibition "Memories Steeped in Dream")
Tour Guide Code
Audio Guide

In 1958, the exhibition “Georges Braque - Large Illustrated Albums” took place in Paris, in order to pay tribute to an unknown part of Braque’s work: his passion for poetry. His engagement in engraving, through the illustration of a text or a poem, helped him to abandon the solitude of his studio and also allowed him to discover other worlds apart from his own. Moreover, it was less physically demanding, something that was crucial for his fragile health.

Purple head, adorning the cover of the exhibition catalogue, symbolizes the quintessence of Braque’s painting alone: elegant, full of delicacy and frugality, of universal scope, which plays with figuration in order to better decompose it. The famous Greek profile, recurrent in his work since the 1930s, floats here on a purple cloud. The immaterial rendering of this head has a poetic dimension befitting so much the exhibition subject, thus making Braque the ideal translator of the emotions conveyed from text to painting.

Georges Braque
(1882 - 1963)
First Name
Last Name
Argenteuil-sur-Seine, France, 1882
Paris, France, 1963