A traveling exhibition of essential works from Pablo Picasso’s personal collection is making its U.S. debut this week.
“Picasso: Masterpieces from the Musee National Picasso, Paris” will include paintings, drawings, sculptures and etchings by the artist and serves as a retrospective covering each notable artistic period of his eight-decade career.
Alex Nyerges, director of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, the tour’s second U.S. stop, said that Picasso’s personal collection contained works the artist consciously chose to shape his artistic legacy, “and he was not a modest man.”
The touring exhibit was made possible because the Paris museum is undergoing a $28 million renovation that won’t be complete until 2012.
The 176-work exhibit highlights Picasso’s depictions of his numerous mistresses and muses, including Dora Maar. A 1937 portrait of the French surrealist photographer features a colorful Maar displaying flamboyant, red-nailed hands. It serves as a contrast to another oil-on-canvas portrait of Maar, who inspired his “Weeping Woman” series.
The show, directed by the Paris museum’s chief curator Anne Baldassari, also includes the 1911 “Man With a Guitar” and 1909-10 “Le Sacre Coeur” – prime examples of the Cubism movement.