Pablo Picasso (Born in Malaga in 1881 – Died in 1973 in the French Riviera) – Pablo Picasso became the most famous artist of the 20th century and was the most prolific painter and sculptor. His parents were Jose Ruiz y Blasco and Maria Picasso y Lopez, from a middle class family. His father was an art teacher and a painter who specialized painting birds. Pablo showed an aptitude for art since he was very young. In 1895 his sister Conchita died of diptheria and this was traumatic for Picasso.Later his family moved to Barcelona and Pablo was enrolled in the School of Fine Arts. Later he studied in the Royal Academy of San Fernando in Madrid, but Pablo was undisciplined and dropped out. However he spent much time in the Prado studying the paintings of Velazquez, Goya, Zurbaran, and El Greco.
In 1900 Pablo Picasso moved to Paris, where he struggled with poverty. He met Leo and Gertrude Stein, American art collectors who started buying Picasso’s work. Picasso met the other artists who lived in Paris, such as Matisse and Georges Braque, as well as the leading intellectuals. In 1907 he shocked the world with his Cubist masterpiece Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, which established him as a very original artist. He co-founded the Cubist school with Braque.
Picasso was married twice and had four children by three women. Many of his women were the subjects of his paintings, and each woman inspired him to paint in a different style. Later Picasso created another masterpiece in 1937 called Guernica, about the German bombing of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War.
Picasso spent the later years of his life on the French Riviera, where he continued to paint and sculpt and create different forms of art. Picasso went through different periods, which some have classified as the Blue Period, Rose Period, African Influenced Period, Cubism, Classicism and Surrealism. When he died he had produced about 50,000 works of art. He had the greatest influence on most artists of the 20th century. That was his legacy. Many of his paintings have been sold as some of the most expensive paintings in the world.
1. Picasso Museum of Malaga
Pablo Picasso was born in Malaga in 1881 at a house in the Plaza de la Merced, where there is now the Picasso Casa Natal Museum. He left Malaga to study art in Madrid, then went to Barcelona and later Paris. He became one of the most influential painters of the 20th century, one of the most revolutionary. He was a cofounder of the cubism style of painting. During his lifetime he said that he wanted his pictures to be exhibited in his native city of Malaga. Picasso’s oldest son was named Paul, who married Christine. They had a son called Paul.
When Picasso died in France in 1973, his estate was divided between the French government (in lieu of taxes) and his family. Christine was then a widow and several years ago, she and her son Paul decided to exhibit their Picasso paintings in Malaga. She worked with the Government of Andalucia to have a museum built to honor Picasso. There were already two other Picasso museums in Europe, one in Barcelona and another in Paris. But there was no museum in Malaga yet.
The government found a home for the museum in the Palacio de Buenavista, a historic palace built in the 16th century. The palace has Italian and Mudejar elements and is an elegant building. Christine Ruiz-Picasso wanted her collection to be housed in a typical Andalusian house. The government had the building remodeled for the museum and the remodeling was finished in 2003. In October 27, 2003, the museum was inaugurated by King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia. There are a total of 233 pieces of art in the museum, many of them are ceramics. The collection is considered comprehensive with many artworks covering all of Picasso’s career.
2. Picasso Casa Natal Museum in Malaga
The Picasso Casa Natal Museum is a museum located in the building where Pablo Picasso was born, and is located at the Plaza de la Merced, at one of the corners of the square. This museum was opened in 1988 and is owned by the City of Malaga. The museum owns 3500 works of art by 200 artists, one of them of course being Picasso.
Among art done by Picasso are sketches, engravings, graphic work, and ceramics. Many of these items were donated by Christine Picasso, his daughter-in-law (widow of Paul), and Marina Picasso, Picasso’s granddaughter and Paul’s daughter. Many of the artists were contemporaries of Picasso. Other items were acquired by the City of Malaga and the Fundacion Picasso.
If you are looking for the new Picasso Museum for the first time, remember that just a couple of minutes away, in the Plaza de la Merced, is the Casa Natal (Birthplace of Picasso), which has been open to the public since 1988. There are now exhibition rooms in the Casa Natal, as well as pictures and a view of how life was for the artist in his early years in Malaga. Some people find the Casa Natal first and mistakenly think that this is the Picasso Museum and then go no further. Since the two buildings are only a few minutes distance apart, visiting them both in one day is both feasible and indeed recommended.
In high season, the Picasso Museum has proved so popular that a queue sometimes forms outside in the narrow pedestrian street, with Picasso ‘aficionados’ patiently waiting their turn to see the works of the great man.
As well as the 12 halls of permanent exhibition gallery, which includes such classic Picasso works as ‘Olga Kokhlova with Mantilla (Barcelona 1917), Mother and Child (1921-1922) and Portrait of Paulo with white hat (1923), there are also many sketches and ceramics on display. In addition there are excellent temporary exhibitions, which are optional when you buy your entrance ticket and are exceptionally well received.