«With your paintings, it is as though you wanted - to make us drink kerosene and eat fire. » Braque to Picasso, 1907
This exhibition follows Picasso’s development from his arrival in 1900 in Paris, where he found a flourishing international artistic community, to 1907-1908, when he achieved status as a leader of the avant-garde in the French capital. The Spanish artist’s first-hand exposure to works by Van Gogh, Gauguin, Puvis de Chavannes, Toulouse-Lautrec, Rodin, Steinlen and others was a revelation for him. His response was immediate and was reflected both in his discovery of new painterly and graphic techniques and also in a commitment to a new subject matter, based on his own experiences of modern life and art.
Although Picasso was accused by critics of imitating the artists whose work had impressed him in Paris, this criticism will be seen to be wide of the mark. Picasso was never an imitator (no work of Picasso’s can be confused with another), but he always helped himself to the innovations of his contemporaries, as well as to the history of art, in order to forge a personal style. By 1907, Picasso had become an internationally recognized artist, but his means of working and his experimentation, which are the focus of the years of this exhibition, are the same as those that underpinned his whole career.
Picasso Museum, Barcelona
Carrer de Montcada, 15-23