- NAME: Pablo Picasso
- OCCUPATION: Painter
- BIRTH DATE: October 25, 1881
- DEATH DATE: April 08, 1973
- EDUCATION: La Llotja (Reial Acadèmia Catalana de Belles Arts de Sant Jordi), Royal Academy of San Fernando, School of Fine Arts (Barcelona, Spain)
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Málaga, Spain
- PLACE OF DEATH: Mougins, France
- AKA: Pablo Ruiz y Picasso
- AKA: Pablo Picasso
- Full Name: Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Martyr Patricio Clito Ruíz y Picasso
Best Known For
Spanish expatriate Pablo Picasso was one of the greatest and most influential artists of the 20th century, as well as the co-creator of Cubism.
Pablo Picasso - Birth (0:57)
Pablo Picasso - Guernica (0:59)
Pablo Picasso - Paintings (0:59)
On October 25, 1881, painter Pablo Picasso was born in Malaga, Spain, and would go on to become one of the founders of Cubism and one of the most influential artists of all time.
Picasso's most political work, "Guernica," is a reaction to the bombings of the Spanish village by German and Italian forces during the Spanish Civil War.
Watch a short video about Pablo Picasso, whose influence spans every aspect of 20th Century Art. He created enough works to fill several museums, and his paintings were concerned more with creating new forms than imitating life.
A short biography of Pablo Picasso who developed cubism and flourished as an artist. His painting "Guernica," which depicts the bombing of a Basque village during the Spanish Civil War, is considered his masterpiece.
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At once destructive and creative, Cubism shocked, appalled and fascinated the art world. "It made me feel as if someone was drinking gasoline and spitting fire," Braque said, explaining that he was shocked when he first viewed Picasso's "Les Demoiselles," but quickly became intrigued with Cubism, seeing the new style as a revolutionary movement. French writer and critic Max Jacob, a good friend of both Picasso and painter Juan Gris, called Cubism "the 'Harbinger Comet' of the new century," stating,
"Cubism is ... a picture for its own sake. Literary Cubism does the same thing in literature, using reality merely as a means and not as an end."
Picasso's early Cubist paintings, known as his "Analytic Cubist" works, include "Three Women" (1907), "Bread and Fruit Dish on a Table" (1909) and "Girl with Mandolin" (1910). His later Cubist works are distinguished as "Synthetic Cubism" for moving even further away from artistic typicalities of the time, creating vast collages out of a great number of tiny, individual fragments. These paintings include "Still Life with Chair Caning" (1912), "Card Player" (1913-14) and "Three Musicians" (1921).
The outbreak of World War I ushered in the next great change in Picasso's art. He grew more somber and, once again, became preoccupied with the depiction of reality. His works between 1918 and 1927 are categorized as part of his "Classical Period," a brief return to Realism in a career otherwise dominated by experimentation. His most interesting and important works from this period include "Three Women at the Spring" (1921), "Two Women Running on the Beach/The Race" (1922) and "The Pipes of Pan" (1923).
From 1927 onward, Picasso became caught up in a new philosophical and cultural movement known as Surrealism, the artistic manifestation of which was a product of his own Cubism.
Picasso's most well-known Surrealist painting, deemed one of the greatest paintings of all time, was completed in 1937, during the Spanish Civil War. After German bombers supporting Francisco Franco's Nationalist forces carried out a devastating aerial attack on the Basque town of Guernica on April 26, 1937, Picasso, outraged by the bombing and the inhumanity of war, painted "Guernica." Painted in black, white and grays, the work is a Surrealist testament to the horrors of war, and features a minotaur and several human-like figures in various states of anguish and terror. "Guernica" remains one of the most moving and powerful anti-war paintings in history.
In the aftermath of World War II, Picasso became more overtly political. He joined the Communist Party and was twice honored with the International Lenin Peace Prize, first in 1950 and again in 1961. By this point in his life, he was also an international celebrity, the world's most famous living artist. While paparazzi chronicled his every move, however, few paid attention to his art during this time.
In contrast to the dazzling complexity of Synthetic Cubism, Picasso's later paintings display simple, childlike imagery and crude technique.
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