Pablo Picasso is one of the most important artists all over the world…who has never heard of him?
In this post we want to pay homage to this great genius, telling you some anecdotes and curiosities in order to better understand his life.
As he said himself: “The quality of an artist depends on the past he carries”.
So, let us tell you some fun facts about Picasso that you may not know!
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To better understand his lifestyle, art and philosophy, first of all we have to come back to his origins.
Picasso, world-famous painter and sculptor, was born in Malaga the 25th of october 1881 in Plaza de la Merced where nowadays you will find the museum of its birthplace.
The father, Jose Ruiz Blasco, was also an artist in Malaga and he was teacher in the School of Arts and Crafts. For this reason, Picasso would start painting since he was a child as a Realistic artist.
The artistic background was so strong that it is said that his first word was “piz” from the Spanish word “lapiz” (pencil).
Picasso’s paintings before and after the Cubism
One of the fun facts that everyone knows, is that the real name of Picasso is much more complicated than the one we usually use.
Picasso’s full name, in the form that appears in his birth certificate, is composed of 23 words: Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Mártir Patricio Clito Ruiz y Picasso.
Easy to remember, right?
Why Picasso is known with this name then?
At the beginning of his artistic career, he used to sign his paintings as P. Ruiz but in his early 20’s he decided to use the surname of the mother (Maria Picasso Lopez – of italian origins), in order to stand out from his father.
His artistic career has been influenced by the different places he lived and the different people he met.
At the age of 10 years, the family of Picasso moved from Málaga to A Coruña where the child started to attend drawing classes, beginning his artistic career.
Growing up, Picasso leaved A Coruña and he started moving among Barcelona, Madrid and Paris; these three cities would be so important for his artistic education.
In Barcelona, he started to hang out at “Els Quatre Gats” (The Four Cats), a place frequented by various artists. Here, he met Carlos Casagemas who would be close friend of Picasso and whose death will mark the artist’s famous blue period.
Picasso is considered one of the most important artists of the times because of his unique style, innovation and artworks, but for sure he is known for being one of the founder and major exponents of the Cubist movement.
Even if he always showed a peculiar way of painting, in 1907 there was an important turning point with “Les demoiselles d’Avignon”, a masterpiece in which the models were represented with innovative shapes and volumes; it was the first approach with the “Cubism”.
With this new style, the artwork was composed by different geometrical shapes represented from different perspectives and points of views.
Another important event which marked the birth of this new style was the friendship and the collaboration with Braque, who painted in a way so similar to Picasso that it was often difficult to distinguish the two artists.
It would be Matisse, the first one to define the works of Picasso and Braque as composed by “small cubes”, from there, the name of this new artistic style that today everyone knows as Cubism!
Picasso joined the Cubist movement approximately for 10 years, abandoning it later to return to a more traditional way of painting, approaching with the time also at the Expressionism and Surrealism.
As we have seen during this post, Picasso is known all over the world for its artistic works and innovations.
However, it is also worth mentioning his political commitment. It is known that Picasso was considered by the Nazi Party as a degenerate artist and he was forbidden to exhibit his paintings.
Moreover, it was important his adherence to the pacifist movement, reason why one of his most famous subjects will be the dove.
We know that all the pieces of Picasso are authentic gems however, in this section of the post, we want to list some of the most importants:
The life of Picasso has been very intense and for sure there are some important anecdotes that need to be mentioned to totally understand this genius.
So, did you know that…
1. Picasso along with his friend, poet Guillaume Apollinaire, were suspected of the robbery of the Mona Lisa that occurred in 1911 in the Louvre, Paris;
2. Outraged by the indignity of fascism during World War II, he decided to join the French Communist Party in 1947. He remained the member until his death;
3. Picasso strongly opposed Franco’s dictatorship. He urged the Museum of Modern Art in the NYC not to return one of his greatest paintings – El Guernica – to Spain until Franco had ceased to govern. The museum promised to do so and kept its word. The painting was returned to Spain in 1981;
4. The Dove of Peace was drawn by Picasso for the World Peace Council in 1949. His habit of drawing doves, or better yet, pigeons, goes all the way back to his childhood, when he used to spend long evenings drawing pigeons in Plaza de la Merced.
Pablo Picasso died in Mougins on April 8, 1973, at the age of 91 years crushed by pulmonary edema.
Some works exposed at the Picasso Museum of Malaga
If you like to travel, there are different museums where you can admire the works of Picasso. We want to report you some of them, which are considered the best ones:
1. Picasso Museum of Barcelona, Spain: with a significant collection of Picasso’s work, it is considered the best to visit;
2. Museum Sammlung Rosengart in Lucerne, Switzerland: various rooms of the museum are dedicated to Picasso;
3. Picasso Museum of Antibes, France;
4. Picasso Museum of Malaga, Spain: here, in the hometown of Picasso, you can visit both the Picasso Museum and the Museum of his birthplace;
5. National Museum Picasso, Vallauris, France;
6. Picasso Museum, Paris, France;
7. Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid, Spain: the museum contains around 100 works of Picasso;
8. Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany: with more than 800 paintings of the artist.
We hope that you enjoyed reading this article about fun and interesting facts regarding Picasso, one of the most famous malagueños all around the world.
Moreover, if you want to read more about the Picasso museum of Malaga and you want to know when is the best moment to visiting it, take a look to our blog post about Top 10 museums in Malaga.