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Friday, May 27, 2022

The Picasso Museum in Barcelona and the UAB promote an overview of the artist’s life and work from a gender perspective.

Latest NewsThe Picasso Museum in Barcelona and the UAB promote an overview of the artist's life and work from a gender perspective.

Pablo Picasso and Dora Maar on the beach, 1935

Misogynist, violent and passionate, an example of patriarchal power and a vampire male who uses his women to make them bloodless in every way. The sentimental (and sexy) biography of Picasso has always been of great interest, also because it cannot be separated from his work, in which women are ubiquitous, often suffer, twisted and deconstructed (a deconstruction that seemed to go on in everyday life if we look at suicidal attempts and hospitalizations of their partners). For this reason, the Picasso Museum, since Emmanuel Guigon became director, in addition to caring for, approving and disseminating the artistic heritage of its founder, has been responsible for revising it from a gender perspective in order to contribute. elements of reflection, allowing to analyze and evaluate his artistic heritage from modern positions. Taking advantage of the transversal dimension of the Picasso Higher Education Program, a free and open access program created by the Picasso Museum in collaboration with the Autonomous University of Barcelona and the Jules Verne University of Amiens in Picardy in 2019, a symposium dedicated to the hegemonic Picasso narrative was held this week to update him and even challenge him.

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“This symposium, and the PhD as a whole, is not a response to what has happened over the past two years, or to the increasingly harsh feminist critique of Picasso’s work, but rather represents the museum’s commitment to providing a contemporary perspective on his life and work. We consider the museum to be a center of research, and therefore we work not only through exhibitions, but also through various actions,” says Emmanuel Guigon, who began his re-reading of Picasso in 2019 with the exhibition “In the name of the father”, curated by Rosa. Martinez, which presented a beautiful and bold performance Los otros invisibles, in which the artist Eulalia Valdosera, in the process of self-hypnosis, offered her voice to the portrait of Jacqueline, stored in the museum. “By turning my body into an antenna, I will have access to the records that the image has memorized about its author, its model and lover. This is a reading of the memory that lives in the work, ”Valldosera explained then.

From Gigon’s speeches, it becomes clear that the Picasso Museum, as a public institution, should not be a prescriber of ideas, but rather a mediator of knowledge. “The museum had to respond to the controversy about Picasso and women that arises from time to time and for a long time hidden, but in recent years it has become more and more real, and the accusations against him have since multiplied. media field,” notes the director, highlighting one of the key issues of the meeting: can and should those who study art history be interested in the intimate lives of artists?

This and other questions, starting with how to organize a Picasso exhibition today without raising uncomfortable questions about his sentimental life and at the same time embracing the gynocentric story, speakers, including professors Jessica Jacques and Andrula Michel, tried to answer. ; Rosario Peiro, head of the collection of the Reina Sofia Museum; José Lebrero, director of the Picasso Museum in Malaga; Cécile Debre, director of the Musée Picasso in Paris, and Nancy Berthier, director of the House of Velázquez.

Engraving by Picasso “Faun discovering a woman”.MUSEUMS ICO

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Participants emphasized the need to take into account not only Picasso’s relationship with women, but also the place that women and the feminine element occupy in his work, both plastic and literary, as well as the importance of ensuring multiple voices and multiple subjects. to provide the public with the tools to overcome the hitherto dominant hegemony of androcentric discourses. “We have to be vigilant so that feminist narratives do not turn back into a heteronormative, hegemonic and anachronistic narrative,” says Jessica Jacques, co-director of the PhD, who has also addressed how, beyond patrimonial discourse, artist biographies in the 20th century and how they should build in the 21st century. They all agreed that some feminist interpretations haunt Picasso’s women, while the gynocentric story relies on his sensibility and that of the scientists who work on him. “Finally, we all call for the utmost courage for practical changes in the management of works, collections and exhibitions. “Through events like this, we want Barcelona to become a reference city for Picasso’s international studies,” Guigon concludes.


The symposium will be followed by two sessions of performances based on Picasso’s gynocentric readings on 18 and 25 May. Pilar Talavera will save the image of Josephine Baker, spy and activist, as well as singer and dancer, while Laura Vilar Dolch will reveal the diversity hidden behind the faceless character of Las Meninas. Daniela Callejas will offer a bodily, spatial and temporal reading of Picasso’s poetic texts, while Meritxell de Soto will offer a collective performance that restores the hereditary practices of the Gósol matriarchy. Rounding out the score are Barbara Bayarri and Elena Ramirez González/Ken Pollet, who reconfigure the museum scene with a drag-and-drop aesthetic, humor and enjoyment. All activities are free.

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