Skip to Content
Today Open today 11–5

Little Harbor in Normandy

Earth toned landscape painting of boats and lighthouses composed of geometric shapes.
© 2018 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris

Image actions

  • Earth toned landscape painting of boats and lighthouses composed of geometric shapes.


spring 1909


Georges Braque
French, 1882–1963

About this artwork

In early 1908, Georges Braque began an artistic collaboration with Pablo Picasso. From 1909 until Braque was mobilized for World War I, they worked in creative dialogue, breaking down and reformulating the representation of objects and their structure. In doing so, they pioneered one of the most radical artistic revolutions of the twentieth century, Cubism. Little Harbor in Normandy is the first fully realized example of Braque’s early Cubist style. He described the English Channel coast in severe geometries and a sober palette, reduced in range and intensity to pale shades of color. His compressed treatment of space and use of a shifting perspective seems to propel the two sailboats forward to the front edges of the picture. To further energize the scene, the artist added a fringe of whitecaps to the sea and dashes of clouds across the sky. His repetitive, striated modeling of form, inspired by his study of the art of Paul Cézanne, increased the rigid tension of this canvas. Documentation suggests that Little Harbor in Normandy was exhibited in Paris in March 1909 at the Salon des Indépendants, making this painting the first major Cubist work to be shown in such a prominent venue.


On View, Gallery 391


Modern Art


Georges Braque


Little Harbor in Normandy


France (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Oil on canvas




81.1 × 80.5 cm (32 × 31 3/4 in.)

Credit Line

Samuel A. Marx Purchase Fund

Reference Number



© 2018 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions