There is no doubting the enduring popularity of Picasso with all age groups and I thought I would share these ongoing exhibitions with you. In the National Portrait Gallery is Picasso Portraits which is exciting in that the portraits – in various media – come from all stages of his career and while some of them are well-known others are not.
They are all of people he knew, including friends, lovers, wives and children such as Guillaume Apollinaire, Carles Casagemas, Santiago Rusiñol, Jaume Sabartés, Jean Cocteau, Olga Picasso, Marie-Thérèse Walter, Dora Maar, Lee Miller, Françoise Gilot and Jacqueline Picasso. You will also discover caricatures and portraits inspired by earlier masters such as Rembrandt and Velazquez. (www.npg.org.uk)
At Omer Tiroche in Conduit Street you will discover Picasso on Paper (until 16th December 2016) with more than thirty works from the early 1900s onwards. They reveal how he used any piece or scrap of paper to capture his thoughts and ideas. (http://www.omertiroche.com).
Outside of London at Compton Verney there is another exhibition of Picasso on Paper (until 11th December 2016) featuring prints from the collection of the Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf. The show gives us an ideal opportunity to look at Picasso as a printmaker with over 70 works from the 1920s-1960s and includes various media – etching, lithography, aquatint and linocut. Although not formally trained he became very adept at printmaking and regarded it as important as painting. In all he created over 2000 prints during his lifetime. Alongside the prints is a selection of his ceramics. They echo themes found in his prints and highlight how the relationship between the two was an important part of Picasso’s artistic output. The ceramics have been loaned by Leicester Arts and Museums Service by kind permission of The Estate of Lord and Lady Attenborough. (http://www.comptonverney.org.uk)
Other Picasso ceramics from Lord and Lady Attenborough’s collection come under the hammer at Sotheby’s London on November 22nd (Lord & Lady Attenborough: A Life in Art – The Celebrated Private Collection of Picasso Ceramics). The Attenborough’s used to visit the Madoura pottery, where Picasso worked, in the South of France on their summer holidays when staying at their summer house near the town of Vallauris and built up a collection which reflects Picasso’s artistic development in working in this medium.
Their son Michael Attenborough CBE recalls that “Vallauris was a great annual pilgrimage. In those days I remember wrapping pots up in brown paper for the drive back to England. At Old Friars, our family home, there was a huge, long table in the hall and the top surface of it would have four or five Picasso pots and underneath it there would be another four or five. Dad scattered them liberally everywhere; he adored them and just loved their extraordinary combination of beauty and wit.”(sothebys.com)