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March 9 to June 16, 2019

Picasso: The Late Work

From the collection of Jacqueline Picasso
Pablo Picasso (1881–1973) is famous for shaking up art in the 20th century, for resetting the bar in painting, sculpture, printmaking, and ceramics. Not so well-known are the last two decades in his career, when Picasso produced more portraits of his wife Jacqueline than of any other model. The exhibition Picasso: The Late Work shows just how innovative Picasso remained until the end of his life. All the loans are from the collection of Jacqueline Picasso (1927–1986). Her daughter Catherine Hutin granted permission for the Museum Barberini to show these items rarely seen in public. The selection by guest curator Bernardo Laniado-Romero includes many works that are being displayed in Germany for the first time, and a few that have never been presented in a museum before.

About the Exhibition

About the Exhibition
Picasso: The late work

In May 1960, when Brassaï met Pablo Picasso again for the first time in almost fifteen years, he was hugely impressed by the artist’s recent work: “But never was I assaulted so brutally as in this villa of La Californie … Art and nature, creation and myth, knights and bullfighting, popular images, Olympus, Walpurgisnacht, all attract your attention … All these things begin to speak at once, competing with one another, pulling you right and left, knocking you over, skinning you alive, reducing you to raw nerves …” At the studio in Cannes, the photographer found himself surrounded by portraits of Picasso’s companion Jacqueline Roque. He could see sculptures and assemblages made of widely disparate materials. Sketches and works on paper using new techniques lay all around. The stylistic variety and the scale of these drafts no doubt contributed to his sense of being overwhelmed. Whereas Picasso’s output in the early years gave rise to distinctly different styles – the Blue Period quite unlike the Rose Period, the exploding shapes of Cubism unrelated to the closed contours of neo-Classicism –, the styles in Picasso’s late work form a synthesis. The media, too, merged: The graphic quality of a line became an expressive element in a painting. In the sculptures, painted surfaces unfold into space, straddling the boundaries between genres.

During the last two decades of his life, Picasso’s work took stock of his past. Revisiting his own œuvre, he picked up familiar themes and revitalized them, but he did so in light of current developments and often in dialogue with other artistic works – from the Old Masters to pop art. Picasso developed ideas initiated by Henri Matisse in his cut-outs. The death of his friend and colleague Matisse in November 1954 unleashed a keen interest in his themes – or, as Picasso put it: “When Matisse died, he left me his odalisques as a legacy.” Picasso returned to the sketches he had made in the 1940s in response to Eugène Delacroix’s painting . In one of the women portrayed by Delacroix, Picasso recognized Jacqueline, with whom he had recently begun a relationship. The following year, he moved into the villa of La Californie with her and her daughter, Catherine. Jacqueline served as his muse and prompted many of Picasso’s depictions of their home’s interior. The rocking chair, her favorite spot, stands in for her constant presence wherever Picasso was working.

Jacqueline Picasso inspired, orchestrated, and administered that overwhelming abundance in Picasso’s studio that Brassaï described. After Picasso’s death, she received an important part of his works when it was divided among his heirs. For the future Musée Picasso in Paris, the French state selected works from all of Picasso’s creative phases, showcasing the full array of his varied techniques. Works from the canonized periods of his oeuvre comprise the bulk of this collection. Picasso’s late work has been best preserved, both quantitatively and qualitatively, within the family – such as the Jacqueline Picasso Collection. It houses pieces which have rarely been seen in the original, although they are well known. They owe their reputation to widely circulated photographs taken by Lucien Clergue, David Douglas Duncan, and Edward Quinn, among others: Picasso and his wife in the studios at La Californie, in the workshop at Mougins to the north of Cannes, and at the family retreat of Château de Vauvenargues in Provence. While the paintings, drawings, sculptures, and ceramics chosen by the state after his death have been accessible to the public at the Musée Picasso in Paris since 1985 – and a representative selection of them were shown in Berlin in the 2005 exhibition Pablo: The Private Picasso, mounted by the city’s Neue Nationalgalerie – many of the treasures from the artist’s studios remained in the family’s possession.

“We are very much looking forward to Picasso in Potsdam! We wish to thank Catherine Hutin, Jacqueline Picasso’s daughter, for agreeing to part with 136 works for the exhibition Picasso: The Late Work. From the Collection of Jacqueline Picasso at the Museum Barberini. Apart from a few exceptions, these are on display in Germany for the first time,” says Ortrud Westheider, director of the Museum Barberini. “In addition to paintings, the exhibition brings together drawings, sculptures, ceremics, and prints, reflecting the creative range of Picasso’s late work. The premiere made possible by this generous loan from her collection illustrates the diversity and enduring topicality of Picasso’s output in the years from 1954 until 1973.”

Picasso’s break with cubism after the First World War puzzled the art world, for his new classicism ran counter to the triumphal march of abstraction. After World War II, which he survived in Nazi-occupied Paris, the artist rejuvenated his œuvre by experimenting with iron sculptures, monumental painting, ceramics, and print-making. In the 1950s and 1960s, Picasso was awarded numerous major commissions such as reliefs in Oslo and Barcelona, murals for the UNESCO building in Paris, a chapel in Vallauris, and the monumental steel sculpture at the Chicago Civic Center created in conjunction with the works on display in the exhibition.

The works for this show in Potsdam were chosen by guest curator, Bernardo Laniado-Romero, former director of the Picasso museums in Barcelona and Málaga, who was responsible for devising the concept, exhibition and catalog. His curatorial approach is to focus on investigating the artist within his own time, in the decades from the 1950s through the early 1970s. “Picasso continued to reinvent himself all his life. Juxtaposing works from different dates reveals the breadth of stylistic expression that makes this period as dynamic as any other,” comments Bernardo Laniado-Romero. “This exhibition offers for the first time the opportunity to see how Picasso moved towards a raw, loosely defined representation of the figure. It is but one indication of the metamorphosis that took place and of the creative energy manifested during the last years of his artistic career. Picasso’s production displays a strength and an inventiveness that the artist preserved until the very end.”
The exhibition is accompanied by a broad program of events and information with lectures, guided tours, concerts, and videos. The Museum Barberini will be working with the Berggruen Collection at the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin to focus on Picasso in Berlin and Potsdam.

The exhibition patron is the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Spain in Germany, H. E. Ricardo Martínez.

Picasso: The Later Years, 1954–1973

The late period of Pablo Picasso’s career (1881–1973) ran parallel to his relationship with Jacqueline Roque (1927–1986). Picasso met the twenty-seven-year-old Jacqueline in 1952, when she was working as a salesperson at the Madoura ceramics gallery in Vallauris in the south of France. They began a relationship in 1954, were married in 1961, and remained together until Picasso’s death. Over the course of these two decades Jacqueline became Picasso’s most important model. He portrayed her in hundreds of paintings and drawings.

In the summer of 1955 Jacqueline, Picasso, and Jacqueline’s daughter Catherine moved into the Villa La Californie in Cannes. Here, he set up studios and workshops, and produced two series of “interior landscapes”, inspired by the tall windows and ornamental stucco of the Art Nouveau-style rooms. Picasso’s decades-long friendship with Henri Matisse, who died in November 1954, also inspired these works.

Famous photographers such as David Douglas Duncan, Lee Miller, and Edward Quinn visited Picasso at La Californie, documenting his work and his private life with Jacqueline. In late 1958 Picasso purchased Chateau Vauvenargues near Aix-en-Provence. Although he brought most of his earlier work to Vauvenargues, he only resided there from time to time. In 1961 Picasso and Jacqueline moved into Notre-Dame-de-Vie in Mougins.

Picasso’s late work unfolded an intense dialogue with the works of masters he admired, such as Diego Velázquez, El Greco, Eugène Delacroix, Edgar Degas, and Édouard Manet. For example, he recognized Jacqueline’s features in one of the exotic odalisques in Delacroix’s nineteenth-century painting The Women of Algiers and created many of his own variations based on this historic painting.

Just as Picasso spent his entire lifetime developing new artistic processes, the late phase of his oeuvre is also characterized by the great pleasure he took in experimentation. The linocut is typical of the prints Picasso produced during this stage. In the field of sculpture, he began working with cut and folded sheet metal in 1954, and the new technique of betograve, a form of concrete engraving, in 1957. His work with ceramics, tapestry, engraving, printmaking, printing, bronze casting, or film transformed Picasso’s studios into lively workshops.

During the last two decades of his life, Picasso was honored in numerous exhibitions around the world and received large public art commissions. A monumental mural he painted for the UNESCO headquarters in Paris was unveiled in 1958, and he produced enormous steel sculptures and concrete reliefs in Norway (1957), Spain (1960/61), Sweden (1965), and the United States (1967). Three museums devoted to his work were opened during Picasso’s lifetime, in Vallauris (1959), Barcelona (1963), and Antibes (1966).

Picasso remained highly productive to the last. Besides his extensive production of prints, he made 175 paintings from January 1969 to February 1970 alone, for example. In 1970 an exhibition in the Palais des Papes in Avignon presented Picasso’s last works, in which he once again radically reinvented his painting style. He died on April 8, 1973, at the age of ninety-one.

Ortrud Westheider (director of the Museum Barberini), Bernardo Laniado-Romero (curator of the exhibition) and Valerie Hortolani (curator at the Museum Barberini) talk about the last 20 years in Picasso's life and his late work.

Ortrud Westheider (director of the Museum Barberini), Bernardo Laniado-Romero (curator of the exhibition) and Valerie Hortolani (curator at the Museum Barberini) talk about the last 20 years in Picasso's life and his late work.

The Paris-based curator, art historian and university teacher Cécile Godefroy talks about the rediscovery of Picasso’s late work, the figure of the musician and the insatiable hunger for experiment of one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century.

The Paris-based curator, art historian and university teacher Cécile Godefroy talks about the rediscovery of Picasso’s late work, the figure of the musician and the insatiable hunger for experiment of one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century.

Matisse, El Greco, Degas, Manet – Picasso’s late work drew its inspiration from many different sources. Charlotte Klonk, Professor of Art and New Media at the Humboldt University of Berlin, traces Picasso’s journey through the history of art during his last years.

Matisse, El Greco, Degas, Manet – Picasso’s late work drew its inspiration from many different sources. Charlotte Klonk, Professor of Art and New Media at the Humboldt University of Berlin, traces Picasso’s journey through the history of art during his last years.

The last years of Picasso’s life were marked by a tremendous urge to create. He reinvented himself time and again in paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures and influenced generations of artists. In Picasso's late work, the various styles form a synthesis. At the same time, he brought an entire universe onto the canvas with just a few strokes.

The last years of Picasso’s life were marked by a tremendous urge to create. He reinvented himself time and again in paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures and influenced generations of artists. In Picasso's late work, the various styles form a synthesis. At the same time, he brought an entire universe onto the canvas with just a few strokes.

Jacqueline Roque was Picasso's second wife and inspired him to create hundreds of works. This phase in his career came to be known as the “Jacqueline period”. Picasso's personal photographer David Douglas Duncan described Jacqueline as a magician who extended the artist’s life and creative work. Their relationship began in 1954.

Jacqueline Roque was Picasso's second wife and inspired him to create hundreds of works. This phase in his career came to be known as the “Jacqueline period”. Picasso's personal photographer David Douglas Duncan described Jacqueline as a magician who extended the artist’s life and creative work. Their relationship began in 1954.

For Picasso, periods of artistic renewal were often accompanied by a change of place and a new phase in his life. After stops in Madrid, Barcelona and Paris, he finally found happiness on the Côte d'Azur with Jacqueline.

For Picasso, periods of artistic renewal were often accompanied by a change of place and a new phase in his life. After stops in Madrid, Barcelona and Paris, he finally found happiness on the Côte d'Azur with Jacqueline.

Picasso's late work played an essential role in the development of art in the second half of the twentieth century. This phase is testimony to the ingenuity and constant renewal that characterized his art to the end. Picasso was also a master of self-dramatization and one of the first international media stars.

Picasso's late work played an essential role in the development of art in the second half of the twentieth century. This phase is testimony to the ingenuity and constant renewal that characterized his art to the end. Picasso was also a master of self-dramatization and one of the first international media stars.

From 1954 Picasso created an incredibly diverse body of work, which until recently was overshadowed by his earlier creations. Large-format paintings, linear drawings, prints, and painted sheet iron sculptures show how Picasso once again broke through artistic boundaries in the last years of his life.

From 1954 Picasso created an incredibly diverse body of work, which until recently was overshadowed by his earlier creations. Large-format paintings, linear drawings, prints, and painted sheet iron sculptures show how Picasso once again broke through artistic boundaries in the last years of his life.

For Picasso, the studio was a living space and everyday environment, a creativity lab and microcosm of his inner world. It was a meeting place for models and muses, children drawing with him, journalists, photographers, Hollywood stars, and pets running free.

For Picasso, the studio was a living space and everyday environment, a creativity lab and microcosm of his inner world. It was a meeting place for models and muses, children drawing with him, journalists, photographers, Hollywood stars, and pets running free.

Publication

"Picasso: The Late Work. From the collection of Jacqueline Picasso"

With contributions by Olivier Berggruen, Michael FitzGerald, Cécile Godefroy, Valerie Hortolani, Bernardo Laniado-Romero, Brigitte Leal, Luise Mahler, Géraldine Mercier, Gabriel Montua, Markus Müller

248 pages, 24.0 x 30.0 cm, 200 color illustrations

ISBN: 978-3-7913-5811-6.

Issue in the museum shop € 29.95, bookstore edition € 39.00

Prestel Munich, 2019

Order

© Prestel Verlag

© Prestel Verlag

"Picasso: The Late Work. From the collection of Jacqueline Picasso"

With contributions by Olivier Berggruen, Michael FitzGerald, Cécile Godefroy, Valerie Hortolani, Bernardo Laniado-Romero, Brigitte Leal, Luise Mahler, Géraldine Mercier, Gabriel Montua, Markus Müller

248 pages, 24.0 x 30.0 cm, 200 color illustrations

ISBN: 978-3-7913-5811-6.

Issue in the museum shop € 29.95, bookstore edition € 39.00

Prestel Munich, 2019

© Prestel Verlag

© Prestel Verlag

Order

Press Reviews

3sat kulturzeit: “A crowd magnet”

Berliner Morgenpost: “Spectacular insights into the late work of this artist of the century”

Berliner Zeitung: “Potsdam’s Barberini Museum has scored a coup with a big exhibition on Picasso’s late work”
https://www.berliner-zeitung.de/kultur/kunst/der-alte-musketier-museum-barberini-landet-coup-mit-picassos-spaetwerk-32191430

BLAU/DIE WELT: “And so to Potsdam, where the imaginative planners at the Museum Barberini pay fitting tribute to the late work ... this final pictorial foray opens with stupendous force ... The selection by guest curator Bernardo Laniado-Romero contains many works which will seem even to anyone who knows their Picasso to have come straight out of the studio. That this not so well-known collection has been lent to Potsdam is nothing less than a shining acknowledgement of the museum’s achievements”

B.Z.: “With this outstanding Picasso exhibition the Museum Barberini presents us with an incredible treasure”

Deutschlandfunk Kultur: “Jacqueline, Jacqueline, Jacqueline … the superb show can be read like a great romantic novel”

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung FAZ: “Now well into his seventies, Picasso has a routine that is no longer weighed down by any problems. But that in itself can lead to problems. What is achieved too comfortably can often produce results that easily lose impact … Thanks to the discerning curatorial selection, this exhibition leaves a different impression. That Picasso repeats himself does not look like ossification but is an expression of his indefatigable vitality”
https://www.faz.net/aktuell/feuilleton/kunst/picasso-ausstellung-der-mensch-ist-nur-einmal-alt-16173746.html?printPagedArticle=true#pageIndex_0

Frankfurter Rundschau: “These are all pictorial ecstasies, aggressive rebellions against the inevitable, also the revitalization of a child’s narcissistic states, in which inside and outside, subject and object, death and birth merge”

Focus: “A mature achievement”

inforadio: “It is Picasso in all his stylistic variety … full of cheerful lightness”

Kölnische Rundschau: “Picasso’s late work is unthinkable without Jacqueline. Whether it is a color-saturated landscape, an abstract interior, an erotic scene, or a cubist head of a woman—everything is marked by a great frenzy of work, which desperately fights decay and death in forceful rhythms of destruction and renewal, with an eros that is armed to the teeth”

kulturradio: “This late Picasso has a lot of new things to offer … we encounter a Picasso who tries out all kinds of things with boundless freedom and seems to value this more highly than the production of masterpieces. Perhaps this is an aspect which only a private collection like this one can reveal”

literaturkritik.de : “The exhibited works offer a fascinating illustration of Picasso’s lifelong ambition to turn all his art into a vast autobiography but to then express himself in fantastic distortions and metamorphoses, in masks, roles and symbols”

Märkische Allgemeine Zeitung: “Long underrated and rarely shown. Pablo Picasso’s late work. It can now be admired at the Museum Barberini”

rbb Online: “The exhibition of the year!”

rbb TV: “For two years now art treasures have been setting out for Potsdam and triggering minor mass migrations. The privately funded Museum Barberini has exerted a magnetic appeal ever since it opened. Monet, Gerhard Richter, Max Beckmann attracted long queues – and now Picasso!”

rbb Kultur - das Magazin: “A unique chance to experience the late Picasso”
https://www.ardmediathek.de/ard/player/Y3JpZDovL3JiYi1vbmxpbmUuZGUvcmJia3VsdHVyLzIwMTktMDMtMDlUMTg6MzA6MDBfY2VhODFkYzktMDU5OC00YzEwLWE5ZmYtZDdlMWJjZTA2NTgzL3BpY2Fzc28tYXVzc3RlbGx1bmc/

Tagesspiegel: “Picasso’s late work is a revolt against age and the trickling away of time. Not in a melancholy or maudlin manner but with a refreshing vitality … Yes, Picasso has outwitted age, and his art at least has even outwitted death … an exhibition that convinces in every respect”
https://www.tagesspiegel.de/kultur/ausstellung-in-potsdam-picassos-unverbrauchte-frische/24084258.html

tip: “Shows the freshness of the late work”

Vogue: “Shows paintings by Picasso never seen before – and tells a moving love story”

Weltkunst/DIE ZEIT: “Pictures by one of the greatest artists of the century, who does not have to prove anything anymore. From the mid-fifties to his death in 1973, Picasso plays freely and sensually with colors and forms”

ZDF TV: “For the Barberini’s opening exhibition, art lovers flocked to Potsdam by the hundreds of thousands. With Picasso the museum presents another public magnet … Dozens of portraits make Jaqueline Picasso the star of the show in Potsdam.”
https://www.zdf.de/nachrichten/zdf-morgenmagazin/picassos-letzte-wilde-phase-100.html

zitty: “The works that the Museum Barberini has brought to Potsdam for this exhibition are sensational”