July 27, 2016. New Posts for July and August Go Up Bi- Weekly, by Jack Dziamba
MUSE – A Woman Who Inspires a Creative Artist.* “The relationship between artist and muse is intuitive, private, visceral, complex.”**
PICASSO AND HIS MUSES
“The Vancouver Art Gallery opened the most significant exhibition of works by Pablo Picasso in Western Canada … Featuring over 60 works including paintings, works on paper and sculptures, Picasso: The Artist and His Muses takes the visitor on a journey through the lives and personalities of six women, Fernande Olivier, Olga Khokhlova, MarieThérèse Walter, Dora Maar, Françoise Gilot and Jacqueline Roque, who were all major figures in Picasso’s personal life and strongly influenced the development of his art. This exhibition is created by Art Centre Basel, curated by Katharina Beisiegel and produced in collaboration with the Vancouver Art Gallery. “
‘“With this exhibition we seek to look beyond Picasso and put a spotlight on the women that heralded the many transformations in his art. These unconventional women often followed their own artistic pursuits and in a form of creative osmosis inspired Picasso intellectually and artistically. Through important works from many international collections this exhibition sheds light on the complex historical and personal narratives that shaped Picasso’s work by focusing on his six most important muses,”’ said Katharina Beisiegel, Deputy Director, Art Centre Basel.” ((Source: Art Daily).
PROFILES of THREE
Images by Picasso inspired by these women may readily be see at artcentrebasel and The Vancouver Art Gallery, producers of the exhibition.
However, since the focus is Picasso’s Muses, we would like to show and describe these women as they really were. By looking at each of them, one can readily see that the relationship between artist and muse is intuitive, private, visceral, and complex.
These women, strong, sensous, beautiful, and smart, could be muses for any artist, even now, and the images produced by their inspiration and passion would indeed be intuitive, private, visceral, complex, and unique.
“In 1927, Picasso met Marie-Thérèse Walter (1909–1977), who is the subject of the third section of the exhibition. During many years of her relationship with Picasso, Walter kept her personal life a secret. Her rich inner world is known to us mainly through Picasso’s representations of her. His colourful palette and serene imagery are telling of Walter’s bright personality and athletic zest for life. By the end of the 1920s, Picasso drew upon Surrealist imagery in his works, creating distorted and non-naturalistic images of Walter such as Female Bather with Raised Arms (1929).
His incredible ability to adapt the human form and include elements of Classical and African art is paramount in works such as Femme couchée lisant (1939). In 1935, Walter and Picasso celebrated the birth of their daughter Maya, though this happiness was dampened by the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War in 1936.”
“The brilliant Surrealist photographer Dora Maar (1907–1997) is central to the fourth section of the exhibition. Maar attended art and photography schools in Paris and became a commercial photographer who took avantgarde and photo-documentary pictures in her spare time. Politically and artistically engaged, she was an active member of the Surrealist movement and participated in socialist groups. Through their mutual acquaintance, the poet Paul Éluard, she met Picasso around 1935–36.
Maar’s expressive reaction is captured in Picasso’s Weeping Woman (1937), a motif that is also used in his tremendous mural Guernica (1937), painted in response to the Spanish Civil War. Maar documented the making of Guernica and contributed to its painting as well, and the two collaborated together throughout 1936–37. With the outbreak of World War II in 1939, the difficulties of life are evident in the sombre palettes and fractured planes of Picasso’s portraits of Maar, such as the eloquent Tête de femme (1943). Maar presented her work in exhibitions in Paris in the 40s and 50s, and continued making work and writing poetry throughout her life.”
“In 1943, Picasso met art student and painter Françoise Gilot (b. 1921), the same year as her first exhibition in Paris. Gilot was introduced to art at an early age, and during the 1940s she was associated with the Modernist school of Paris. Picasso captured her likeness in a series of evolving styles, as seen in a rich display of lithographs presented in Gilot’s section of the exhibition.
His 1946 oil on canvas Femme au collier jaune is a luminous portrait showing his strength as a painter. After World War II, Picasso’s and Gilot’s lives were marked by a comfortable period with the birth of their two children; Claude and Paloma (1950) is a stunning panel capturing this idyllic period of family life.
Throughout the 1950s Gilot exhibited in Paris, and eventually turned to writing, publishing the best-selling Life with Picasso in 1964 and in 2015 co-authored About Women: Conversations between a Writer and a Painter. She continues to paint daily.”
(Source. all quotes, Art Daily.)