National Gallery – Picasso

Picasso Exhibition National gallery.jpg

So today’s excursion was to the National Gallery in London to see the Picasso exhibition. I am actually lucky enough to have seen his early sketching in a museum in Malaga when I was younger. My mother and myself got lost trying to find the Picasso museum and ended up in the free Picasso foundation museum and it was excellent. I wouldn’t say that the exhibition at the national gallery stood up to that today it was a lot colder and more clinical than being the only 3 people in the building surrounded by sketches which clearly had a lot more love thrown into them than white walls and hundreds of people reading absurd tags on the walls. I do want to know how they know what Picasso was thinking when he painted/drew anything? Did they sit him down and go Mr Picasso what were you thinking when you painted your ex wife looking like two bananas and a sprouting flower? Or did they just presume after his death, oh this was happening so he must have felt like this and this is why he painted this way. I found the most interesting thing for me today minus two portraits was actually seeing the links between him and other artists, poets and playwrights of the day. I wasn’t aware of how closely linked the arts movement in Barcelona and Paris was linked, I didn’t know that Lautrec knew Picasso and this in itself is interesting for me. Once again it seems that some of the most ingenious minds gravitate together as they also did during the 1950’s and this fascinates me. I found two portraits in the exhibition that mesmerised me, the first was Fernande Olivier with a black mantilla. This portraiture of his love interest captured my attention as I am a grunge artist and I fall in love with textures and muted colours. The way he painted her was haunting and has to be a new favourite piece of mine. The second was of his children in Claude drawing, Francoise and Paloma. There was clear tension in this portrait but the children still played happily and this reminded me of my own childhood. Overall I think it was well worth going to see Picasso in a new light but I much preferred seeing the portraits in the city Picasso called home Malaga and Barcelona. My next adventure will be too Madrid as I have a lifelong dream to see Guernica.

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