Spotlight on Picasso
- Alexander Kennedy
- 6 September 2007
It is almost impossible to imagine the art world as it exists today without the influence of Pablo Picasso. Modernism in art simply would not have existed without the great Spanish artist. The work currently on show at the National Museum of Scotland and the Dean Gallery explores this influence, both galleries exhibiting some of the major pieces from his 75-year career, as well as showcasing memorabilia from his personal life.
Picasso on Paper at the Dean focuses on the formal leaps the artist made in printmaking, through lithographs, etchings and linocuts. Picasso pushed this medium further than any other early 20th century artist, picking up techniques then turning them on their heads.
This desire to shake every bit of energy out of his art can also be found in Picasso’s life. The exhibition Fired With Passion at the National Museum dares to suggest ways into the artist’s biography through his art and vice versa. Unsurprisingly, misogynistic, egomaniacal tales abound (squeals of ‘Do not question the pilot’ and ‘I do not seek, I find’ litter his interviews). But for all his complex passions and personal politics, Picasso remains a powerful, fascinating subject for aficionados and those with a passing interest in art.
Picasso on Paper, Dean Gallery, Edinburgh, until Sun 28 Oct; Fired With Passion, National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, until Sun 23 Sep.