Georges Braque’s painting Houses at l’Estaque painted in 1908 is considered one of the most important landscape paintings in early Cubism. The painting depicts Cézannian trees and houses without any unifying perspective, which was a response to works by Braque’s idol, Paul Cézanne, who lived in L’Estaque for a period of time.
Braque returned to L’Estaque for a second summer in a row and painted the small port with brilliant irreverent colors of Fauvism. This style can be observed in his works such as Violin and Candlestick (1910) and Houses at Estaque (1908). His paintings over this summer are considered the first Cubist works, revealing his determination to break imagery into dissected parts.
Braque’s style of Cubism became influential on Pablo Picasso, leading them to become the founders of the movement. Houses at l’Estaque is an excellent example of Proto-Cubist artwork that challenged traditional perspectives and influenced modern art movements of futurism, constructivism, suprematism and expressionism. Braque was studying form while simultaneously flattening it out with planar shapes that added multiple perspectives to create depth rather than depicting it through vanishing points like Renaissance artists did before him.