Pablo Picasso

Great Artists

Three musicians by Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso

Picasso (1881-1973) was an innovative and experimental master painter, sculptor, printmaker, writer, and co-creator of the avant-garde Cubist movement with French artist Georges Braque. 

Picasso photo
Pablo Picasso,

The Cubist style was a new reality, refuting traditional theories that art should imitate nature, and instead presenting flat, two-dimensional surfaces that depicted fragmented objects not bound to expectations of form, texture, and space. 

[Credit: Three Musicians by Pablo Picasso, 1921,]

The Old Guitarist
The Old Guitarist by Pablo Picasso, 1903,

Picasso was born in Málaga, Spain, but spent most of his adult life in France. His father Don José Ruiz y Blasco was an artist who also taught art classes and curated the local museum. He realized his son's talent when he began teaching him drawing and oil painting at age 7. 

At 13, Picasso started attending the School of Fine Arts in Barcelona, where his father taught. In 1897, Picasso began studying at Madrid's prestigious Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando, but he quickly tired of his classes, preferring to roam art exhibits at the Prado, studying paintings by Rembrandt, Johannes Vermeer, and El Greco.

In 1900, Picasso first went to Paris, the center of the European art scene. He lived in abject poverty, sometimes burning his own paintings to stay warm. He briefly relocated to Madrid and worked on a literary magazine called "Young Art," illustrating articles sympathetic to the poor, before returning to France. During Picasso's somber "blue period" (1901-1904) after the death of a friend, he painted primarily in shades of blue, with occasional accent colors, such as the The Old Guitarist, which features a guitar in warmer browns amid the blue tones.

Picasso's "rose period" followed, from 1904 through 1906, with less melancholy shades of pink and rose and more playful subjects such as clowns and harlequins.  Around 1907, influenced by Paul Cézanne, Vincent Van Gogh, and archaic and tribal art, Picasso began his path toward Cubism, which played an enormous role in the development of western art.

To learn more about Picasso:



No submissions yet. Be the first!