Following the success of Picasso: Mosqueteros in the spring of 2009—an exhibition heralded by The New York Times as one of the best shows in New York City since the turn of the century—Picasso biographer John Richardson will again partner with the artist’s grandson Bernard Ruiz-Picasso to curate Picasso: The Mediterranean Years (1945–1962) at Gagosian Britannia Street in London.
In the postwar years, Picasso began to spend more and more time in the South of France, marking a return to the Mediterranean heritage that had nourished some of his most important stylistic changes in the past. A vibrant social scene including bullfighters and poets; an international cast of friends and admirers; the return of Cocteau as his poet laureate; a renewal of family life, with the birth of Claude and Paloma (his children with Françoise Gilot), who joined their siblings Paulo (his son with Olga Khokhlova) and Maya (his daughter with Marie-Thérèse Walter); and the love of Jacqueline Roque and her daughter Cathy infused the work produced there with new life. Besides pitting himself against Delacroix, Manet, and Velázquez and painting some of his most challenging works, in the 1950s Picasso revolutionized sculpture and ceramics and pushed boundaries in lithography, linocuts, and other graphic techniques. At Vallauris, where he transformed a disused perfume factory into a series of studios; at La Californie, his great fin de siècle villa; and at Vauvenargues, his magnificent château on the slopes of the Mont Sainte-Victoire, the work of the most widely known artist in the world was reborn.
Presenting important portraits of Françoise, Claude, Paloma, and his last great muse Jacqueline, as well as linocuts, ceramics, and several iconic sculptures—including La guenon et son petit (1951), Petite fille sautant à la corde (1950), La femme enceinte I (1950), and Sylvette (1954)—Picasso: The Mediterranean Years will be organized around generous loans from members of the artist’s family of works that have come to be known as “Picasso’s Picassos.” Installed in galleries transformed by architect Annabelle Selldorf, the exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with new essays by John Richardson, Elizabeth Cowling, and Jean Cocteau’s biographer, Claude Arnaud.
With a focus on Picasso’s most intimate works, Picasso: The Mediterranean Years will provide an important contrast to Tate Liverpool’s exhibition Picasso: Peace and Freedom. Between these two exhibitions, visitors to Great Britain in the summer of 2010 will have an extraordinary opportunity to explore the public and private faces of this peerlessly multidimensional artist in the 1950s.
Fashion and Art: Pieter Mulier
Pieter Mulier, creative director of Alaïa, presented his second collection for the legendary house in Paris in January 2022. After the presentation, Mulier spoke with Derek Blasberg about the show’s inspirations, including a series of ceramics by Pablo Picasso, and about his profound reverence for the intimacy and artistry of the atelier.
The Art of Biography: Sir John Richardson’s “The Minotaur Years”
Pepe Karmel celebrates the release of A Life of Picasso IV: The Minotaur Years, 1933–1943, the final installment of Sir John Richardson’s magisterial biography.
Michael Cary pays homage to the visionary dealer Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler (1884–1979).
Grace McCann Morley
Berit Potter pays homage to the ardent museum leader who transformed San Francisco’s relationship to modern art.
The New World of Charlotte Perriand
Inspired by a visit to the Fondation Louis Vuitton’s exhibition Charlotte Perriand: Inventing a New World, William Middleton explores the life of this modernist pioneer and her impact on the worlds of design, art, and architecture.
Picasso and Maya: An Interview with Diana Widmaier-Ruiz-Picasso
Diana Widmaier-Ruiz-Picasso curated an exhibition at Gagosian, Paris, in 2017–18 titled Picasso and Maya: Father and Daughter. To celebrate the exhibition, a publication was published in 2019; the comprehensive reference publication explores the figure of Maya Ruiz-Picasso, Pablo Picasso’s beloved eldest daughter, throughout Picasso’s work and chronicles the loving relationship between the artist and his daughter. In this video, Widmaier-Ruiz-Picasso details her ongoing interest in the subject and reflects on the process of making the book.
A Foreigner Called Picasso
Curated by Annie Cohen-Solal and Vérane Tasseau
November 10–December 22, 2023
West 21st Street, New York
Extended through June 29, 2019
Picasso’s Women: Fernande to Jacqueline
A tribute to John Richardson
May 3–June 29, 2019
980 Madison Avenue, New York
Extended through February 24, 2018
Picasso and Maya
Father and Daughter | Curated by Diana Widmaier Picasso
October 19, 2017–February 24, 2018
rue de Ponthieu, Paris