The Picasso year, from Paris to the Côte d’Azur…

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A great artist for two countries, a year of events and many destinations to celebrate him: it is the year of Picasso, on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of his death, and the events in his honor do not stop multiply, as well as travel opportunities.

Spain is one of the painter’s strategic destinations, but Paris and the Côte d’Azur are the essential French destinations for his stays dedicated to art and the search for his spirit.

Exhibitions in Parisian museums

We can only start from the City of Light, a fundamental city for his training, where Picasso first arrived in 1900 and where he stayed for long periods at the beginning of the 20th century, coming into contact with the artistic and bohemian world. of the capital.

A must-see, the National Picasso-Paris Museum, located in a 17th century building. The museum’s collection was donated by Picasso’s heirs and is representative of his entire artistic career between major works and archives (more than 200,000 pieces).

And on the occasion of the 2023 anniversary, until August 6, the museum is offering “The collection takes color”, under the artistic direction of Paul Smith, a reorganization of the permanent collection, which mixes masterpieces museums, works by modern and contemporary artists, and an invitation from the British designer to imagine and design the whole.

After the summer, from September 12 to January 28, 2024, the exhibition “A toi de faire ma mignon. Sophie Calle at the Picasso Museum”, in which the artist will dialogue with Picasso’s work. Tributes continue at the Musée du Luxembourg, where from September 13 to January 21 the exhibition “Gertrude Stein and Picasso. The invention of language”, and at the Center Pompidou, with the exhibition “2023 drawings”, from October 18 to January 22, 2024, with more than 2,000 drawings and engravings by the artist.

Vallauris and ceramics

Beyond painting and sculpture, the other passion of the multifaceted genius was ceramics, in order to use all the plastic potential offered by the material. It is estimated that between 3,500 and 4,000 works by Picasso were made in ceramics, especially from 1948, when he moved to Vallauris, on the Côte d’Azur. He lived there until 1955, and produced one of his great masterpiece frescoes, War and Peace, in the chapel of the Medieval Castle, now the National Museum.

In addition, the village has preserved since the Middle Ages the tradition of pottery, which also fascinated the artist. Indeed, the works of Picasso and Alberto Magnelli are exhibited at the Magnelli Museum, Vallauris Ceramics Museum, and from May 6 to October 30 it will also be possible to visit the exhibition “Form and metamorphoses: the ceramic creation of Picasso” with works between 1946 and 1971. And the locality will celebrate its illustrious fellow citizen during a dedicated festive weekend, on May 6 and 7.

Mougins is also a locality that keeps traces of its passage. And then about twenty minutes by car from Vallauris, towards the sea, we arrive at Antibes, where Picasso had his studio in a private residence, which was a Roman castrum, then residence of the bishops in the Middle Ages to become Château Grimaldi , inhabited from 1385 by the family of the Monegasque princes. In 1925, the castle was bought by the city of Antibes and became the headquarters of the Grimaldi Museum. In 1946, the first curator Romuald Dor de la Souchère proposed to Picasso to use the large space inside the building as a studio.

And the artist worked there for two months, giving life with his tireless creativity to 23 paintings and 44 drawings, to which he will add 78 ceramics, which he bequeathed to the city. In 1966, the Museum was renamed the Picasso Museum, the first museum dedicated to the artist. On the occasion of the 50th anniversary, this other Picasso museum offers the exhibition “Picasso 1969-1972: The end of the beginning” from April 8 to July 2.

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