Pablo Picasso: Life Path of the Genius Painter

Essay on Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso was a prominent person, whose artworks have made an outstanding influence on the development of modern art. Pablo Picasso’s works include an enormous number of paintings, drawings, sculptures, and costumes. Over 20,000 art works represent not only a valuable work in regard to art but also convey meaningful political, intellectual and cultural messages. The impact of this heritage on modern art can be hardly overestimated and his creative styles, Cubism, Neoclassicism, Surrealism, and Expressionism go beyond realism and abstraction.

The prominent painter was born in 1881 in Malaga, Spain in the family of a teacher of drawing. No one knows what profession will be chosen by Pablo if his father had another occupation. Anyway, father taught his son and Pablo started painting from his childhood.  According to some biographic data even the first word, said by Pablo was “LAPIZ” (in Spanish “pencil”) that seemed to be a sign of the outstanding future. Having started teaching his son at the age of 7, Pablo’s father swore to stop drawing when the son was 13. At that age, it was obvious that Pablo stood head and shoulders above him.

In 1897 Picasso studied for a short period in Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando in Madrid. The study in the academy was not very interesting for Pablo and he spent most of his time studying the collections of the Prado museum. In 1899 Picasso continued his studies in Barcelona and during this period became closely connected with the group of modernist artists, poets, and writers, among them was Carlos Casagemas.

During his life, Picasso was evolving as a painter and his vision of art and style developed along with that. Thus, his artworks are divided into the following periods.

1901-1904 – Blue period. This time is characterized by blue and green color gamma that was occasionally warmed by other color shades. Living in Paris and Spain Pablo was influenced by his trips from city to city and suicide of his friend Carlos Casagemas. He devoted several portraits to Carlos, including famous “La Vie”.

1904-1906 – Rose period. During these years Picasso crafts his works in pink and orange shades, mostly depicting circus acrobats and harlequins. Within this period Pablo becomes an acknowledged and beloved artist of many art collectors. Thus, famous American Leo and Gertrude Stein choose Pablo to be their favorite. During this period Picasso pictures are exhibited in different galleries.

1907-1909 African art and primitivism. The beginning of this stage was initiated by the influence of African artifacts that Picasso saw in the Palais du Trocadéro museum. The first work of this period was Les Demoiselles d’Avignon. The picture was not exhibited for a long period, due to the dubious thoughts and impressions of Henri Matisse, Pablo’s close friend and rival.

1909-1912 – Analytic Cubism. Actually, this style was developed by Picasso along with Georges Braque. They used monochrome neutral and brownish colors and depicted objects by means of analyzing them regarding their shapes. The name of Pablo Picasso is always associated with Cubism, the style, which he created and used in his works.

1912-1919 – Synthetic Cubism.  The phase became a further development of the Cubism style, which was expressed in cut paper fragments (newspaper pages, wallpapers). During the Synthetic Cubism period, the artist started a series of drawings devoted to depicting geometric and minimalist Cubist objects.

1919-1929 Neoclassicism and surrealism. After the trip to Italy in 1971, Picasso crafted a work in neoclassical style. The paintings of this period recall works of Raphael and Ingres. Actually, during this period except for Picasso, many other artists returned to neoclassic and surrealistic styles: André Derain, Giorgio de Chirico, Gino Severini, Jean Metzinger.

During the World War II Picasso stayed in Paris and crafted works in his painter’s studio. Besides paintings, within this period he has written over 300 poems. During the final years of his life, Picasso performed reinterpretations of works of famous painters. Within these years his works represented a mixture of styles that was not always understood by the audience. Only after his death, Picasso’s late works received true recognition.