Wednesday, April 18, 2012

P = Pablo Picasso in Paris - A to Z Challenge

A Spanish artist came to town. . .


Pablo Picasso 1962, via Wikipedia Commons (PD)



Pablo Picasso, the Spanish painter of Guernica, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer.  His complete name is 'Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso'.  Thankfully, he used the short form.  Picasso demonstrated uncanny artistic talent in his early years, painting in a realistic manner through his childhood and adolescence. 


Best Known Works:


Les Demoiselles d'Avignon (1907)

Guernica (1937)

The Weeping Woman (1937)


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Picasso made his first trip to Paris in 1900, when it was the art capital of Europe. He met his Parisian friend, the journalist and poet Max Jacob soon after arriving.  Soon they shared an apartment in Montmartre; Max slept at night while Picasso slept during the day and worked at night.  These were times of poverty, cold and desperation. Much of Pablo's early work was burned to keep the small room warm.



While in Paris, Picasso became part of an artistic group of friends in the Montmartre and Montparnasse quarters, including André Breton, poet Guillaume Apollinaire, writer Alfred Jarry, and Gertrude Stein.   By 1905, Picasso had become a favourite of the American art collectors, Gertrude and Leo Stein.  Gertrude eventually became Picasso's principal patron, acquiring and exhibiting his work in her informal Salon at her home in Paris.  At one of these gatherings in 1905, he was introduced to Henri Matisse who became his lifelong friend and rival.



Le Bateau-Lavoir



Le Bateau Lavoir, Picasso lived and painted here - by DG Hudson


Pablo Picasso took up residence in the Le Bateau Lavoir between 1900 and 1904.  He had moved away by 1911, and most of the other artists followed as war loomed in 1914.  It was in this milieu that Picasso first discussed Cubism. While in the Bateau-Lavoir he painted one of his most noted works, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon.


Women were attracted to Pablo's brooding and bohemian ways in his younger days and throughout his life. The photographer and painter Dora Maar was a lover and constant companion of Picasso. The two were closest in the late 1930s and early 1940s, and it was Maar who documented the painting of Guernica


Throughout his life Picasso maintained a number of mistresses in addition to his wife or primary partner.  As a result, his marriages were marked by strife and two of his ladies killed themselves after his death.  Picasso was married twice and had four children by three women.


Pablo Picasso died on 8 April 1973 in Mougins, France.  Jacqueline Roque, his third wife, prevented his children Claude and Paloma from attending the funeral.  Devastated after Picasso's death, she took her own life in 1986; she was 59 years old.  Four children survived. 

Picasso was another of those interesting personalities that gravitated to Paris at the same time.  A passionate man who pursued his vision.  He lived life the same way.

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My favourite Picasso?  Guernica

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Are you a fan of Picasso's art? Any favourite works, sculptures by Pablo?  Please share in the comments.

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_Bateau-Lavoir  - Artists at Bateau Lavoir

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pablo_Picasso  - Pablo Picasso

http://www.pablopicasso.org/ - Artworks, quotes and biography

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13 comments:

  1. wow--good thing we try to separate the art from the artist---cause talented genius or not, he sounds like a creep---love his work--our main art museum just hosted a collection of his works---it was greatly attended

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    1. We have to separate the artist from his work in a lot of instances, or we wouldn't accept the poor behaviour of our celebrities and politicians.

      I'm glad to hear he's still getting showings. He had a tough time until Gertrude took him under her wing.

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  2. Picasso is interesting to me because of the diversity in his style. While he is well known for his more abstract style in paintings like Guernica (I think it's cubism?), he also painted realistic portraits.

    One of his works that he toiled over for a long time was a portrait of Gertrude Stein. When he finished it, someone told him that painting looks nothing like her. He replied that someday, she would look like the painting. And she did.

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    1. You're totally right on that, Rick!

      There's also a bronze bust of a woman that Picasso did that looks like Gertrude as well.

      Doesn't Pablo look like a bit like Bruce Willis in that photo above? It's the smirk in his smile.

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  3. Hi DG .. great post - as I don't know Picasso that well .. other than seeing the posters that abound. I'm not very artistic - but am beginning to appreciate some works of art .. and I love learning about their early life.

    I'd love to actually see his appartments etc .. Cheers Hilary

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    1. Hi Hilary, I would also like to find the places where he lived in Montparnasse.

      An art history professor taught me to love Picasso work by showing me the earlier realistic work and explaining what he was trying to accomplish with cubism. Made a world of difference to me in how I perceived his work.

      Thanks for stopping by.

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  4. Great post. My husband is an artist so he likes to explain the concept around cubism. He loves Picasso. :)

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    1. So does that mean you like Picasso, or just tolerate him?

      Thanks for visiting.

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  5. Traveling through the A-Z challenge and stopping here to say hi :)Happy alphabet! Never been a big Picasso fan, but some of his work is rather interesting =)

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    1. Glad you could stop by,Siv Maria.

      Picasso may be an acquired taste. Art is very subjective.

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    2. Thanks for the follow, too, forgot to add that.

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  6. I "knew" Picasso, but I didn't really know Picasso. Thank you for a great informative post!

    Since you have me thinking about artists, my random little tidbit: we have locally (okay, across the bay) the Salvador Dali Museum in St. Petersburg, Florida.

    Thinking about separating artists from their work: The hardest part of attending sci fi related conventions can be meeting the actors.

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    1. Seeing this late, J., but I agree that talent doesn't always equate with personailty. Would love to see that Dali museum. I saw his works early at college and love his esoteric art.

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