Pablo Picasso is considered one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. It just so happens, today is his birthday (10/25/1881). So, I thought I would share…
I have had wonderful opportunities to travel lately. One “leg” of one such trip included a 14 hour flight - each way… so, to say, I had time to enjoy in-flight movies is a bit of an understatement. BUT, guess what I selected to watch? National Geographic’s Genius series… on PICASSO! I have to tell you, I was hooked from the first episode.
If you are unfamiliar with the series, HERE is a link. The second season of the Genius series is all about Picasso. The series tells the story of the artist’s life by marrying the young Picasso’s (Alex Rich) life with the mature Picasso’s (Antonio Banderas) life. It addresses many of the events I have read about Picasso’s life and art. One event includes one of Picasso’s most revered works (Guernica) which is an anti-war painting that depicts the bombing of Gernika, a town in the Basque region of Spain, during the Spanish Civil War. (I found this art history video explaining some of the possible symbolism Picasso employed in the painting (HERE). )
BOOK ABOUT GUERNICA
In one of my college Art History classes, we briefly touched on Pablo Picasso's Guernica. Since that brief encounter, I have learned a little more about this massive work which was displayed over 80 years ago at the Paris World's Fair (1937). The painting took a long journey in it’s return to Spain according to Picasso’s wishes, and is now displayed at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid, Spain.
So, of course, when I came across a copy of Picasso's War by Russell Martin, the book was added to my reading stack. I am not going to lie to you, the beginning of the book was difficult for me to get through because I have no point of reference. I admittedly know little to nothing about the Spanish-American War, let alone the Spanish Civil War. But, I am trying to remedy that void, and this book was a start in that direction.
One of the stories detailed in the book tells about the mysterious appearance of a blue band of color about one meter from the floor on the wall opposite the Guernica painting. After continuously repainting the wall, the Museum posted staff to observe the wall where the horizontal blue blur appeared. What was the source of the blue blur you ask? It seems the painting is a popular attraction of the museum and the patrons lean against the wall to study the painting… wearing blue jeans.
I have to say, the more I learn and study this painting, the more I want to see it in person. Road trip to the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia to add to the blue blur anyone?