Picasso and Paper

by Ann Dumas (Author), Emilia Philippot (Author), William H. Robinson (Author)

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Pablo Picasso’s artistic output is astonishing in its ambition and variety. This handsome new publication examines a particular aspect of his legendary capacity for invention: his imaginative and original use of paper.

He used it as a support for autonomous works, including etchings, prints and drawings, as well as for his papier-collé experiments of the 1910s and his revolutionary three-dimensional ‘constructions’, made of cardboard, paper and string. Sometimes, his use of paper was simply determined by circumstance: in occupied Paris, where art supplies were hard to come by, he ripped up paper tablecloths to make works of art. And, of course, his works on paper comprise the preparatory stages of some of his very greatest paintings, among them Les Demoiselles d’Avignon (1907) and Guernica (1937).

With reproductions of more than 300 works of art and additional texts by Violette Andres, Stephen Coppel, Emmanuelle Hincelin, Christopher Lloyd, Johan Popelard and Claustre Rafart Planas, this sumptuous study reveals the myriad ways in which Picasso’s genius seized the potential of paper at different stages throughout his career.

Pablo Picasso

A prolific and tireless innovator of art forms, Pablo Picasso impacted the course of 20th-century art with unparalleled magnitude. Inspired by African and Iberian art and developments in the world around him, Picasso contributed significantly to a number of artistic movements, notably Cubism, Surrealism, Neoclassicism, and Expressionism. Along with Georges Braque, Picasso is best known for pioneering Cubism in an attempt to reconcile three-dimensional space with the two-dimensional picture plane, once asking, “Are we to paint what’s on the face, what’s inside the face, or what’s behind it?” Responding to the Spanish Civil War, he painted his most famous work, Guernica (1937), whose violent images of anguished figures rendered in grisaille made it a definitive work of anti-war art. “Painting is not made to decorate apartments,” he said. “It’s an offensive and defensive weapon against the enemy.” Picasso’s sizable oeuvre includes over 20,000 paintings, prints, drawings, sculptures, ceramics, theater sets, and costume designs.

Product Details

Hardcover: 328 pages
ISBN-10: 1912520176
ISBN-13: 978-1912520176
Dimensions: 25.15 x 3.3 x 30.73 cm
Publisher: Royal Academy of Arts; 1st edition (21 Jan. 2020)
Language: English

Editorial Reviews

"Nothing less than an accumulation of sacred relics."
Laura Cumming
Guardian
"Reveals the full scope of his brilliance."
Waldemar Januszczak
The Times
"The work is a whirlwind of innovation, and here, on paper, Picasso is doing it all at his most intimate and unguarded... this is a show filled with jaw-dropping moments of beauty."
Time Out London

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