Monday, March 31, 2014

A to Z CHALLENGE - ART: Picasso's BLUE Period



 
Thank you to Arlee Bird,
Alex J. Cavanaugh, and all the co-hosts
of the 2014 A to Z Challenge,
for your tremendous efforts
to 'make it happen' each year.
 
 
 
 

The theme of my 2014 A-to-Z Blog Challenge is BLUES, PUPUS, and REVIEWS.
Tuesday & Friday - BLUES: Art, Movies, Music, and Police;
Thursday & Saturday - PUPUS: Hawaiian snacks to whet your appetite;
Monday & Wednesday - REVIEWS: mini-style book reviews

When I worked in the Chicago Loop, my interest in Picasso was fueled by a daily lunchtime rendezvous with Picasso’s unnamed sculpture. Donated to the city in 1967, it dominated the Civic Center (Daley Plaza).
 



I also spent an inordinate amount of time at the Art Institute of Chicago (now The Chicago Institute of Art) in Grant Park. Picasso’s most popular ‘Blue Period’ painting, THE OLD GUITARIST, was displayed prominently there. I purchased a poster of the piece, framed it, and hung it on my apartment wall. Years later, the poster still triggered images of the original painting’s genius brush strokes. Far from feeling blue, the obvious message of despair Picasso projected, I felt my spirits soar.
 
I especially like the elongated fingers of the old guitarist in the painting. They reflect the influence El Greco had on Picasso. His blue period, from 1901 through 1904, was dominated by themes of loneliness and poverty, possibly sparked by his friend’s suicide.
 
Some say it was not poverty that led Picasso to paint the impoverished outsiders of society: beggars, prostitutes, drunks, and outcasts, but that he painted them made him poor himself. If this is true, does it follow that subject matter also determines a writer’s spiritual wealth?

27 comments:

  1. Hi, Gail:

    I love museums myself.

    Hugs and chocolate!

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  2. That's a deep question...
    He did some amazing stuff. Cool you had a copy of The Old Guitarist.

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  3. Picasso is interesting. I'll be featuring him later in the month, handled in a different way. Very nice that a sculpture can trigger memories for you.
    Enjoyed reading your post!

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  4. I LOVE Picasso, my favorite - they rotate actually because I love his work so much. BUT, the one I love currently is Girl Before A Mirror (1932).

    Cristina from Filling my Prayer Closet

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  5. Beautiful post! I love your themes, as well.

    I am a painter, have had approximately one thousand years of art training, and when I was a teen I was assigned to sew clothing out of canvas and then paint replicas of famous paintings on them (and then model them for a fashion show!) The first year, I did Picasso's Old Guitarist. So yes, I do know this painting rather intimately, having re-painted it, though I've never had the pleasure of seeing it in person.

    Can I say, I am so looking forward to your food posts... lol!

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  6. Also, in my opinion there is *so* much more to a painting than subject matter, so it really shouldn't determine anything finite about the painter. Though what gives me pause here is Gauguin's subject matter... ah, good question. I'm inclined to say no, still.

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  7. Raquel, a thousand years is a lot of art training! So interesting that you actually repainted The Old Guitarist. That is really becoming intimate with the artist.

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  8. What a fun theme, I'm going to enjoy your A to Z posts.

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  9. I'm the first to admit that I have no real appreciation for art! Sure, I love a beautiful painting but I never can see past the outer beauty to see the meaning within!

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  10. Interesting how many people love Picasso's work. I admit, Jeanette, I don't never got into his cubist work with all the angles and misplaced parts.

    Thanks for visiting. I look forward to visiting all of your sites over the next four weeks.

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  11. It can be hard to sort out causes, effects, coincidences, and tenuous connections in this world, especially with art involved.

    Nice to meet you! Thanks for sharing that picture of the sculpture, it doesn't look like despair to me either.

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  12. Picaso was an amazing artist, and just because a painting was painted during a sad period for the artist does not mean the viewer has to feel as such. We all have different reactions to paintings. Anyway, I am visiting as many people as I can during the A to Z Challenge, so I decided to stop by and say hello.

    Sweetbearies Art Projects

    Sweetbearies Art Photography

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  13. Great theme! I can't wait to see what April holds!

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  14. I remember that painting from my one visit there nearly twenty years ago. Thanks!

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  15. Hi Gail! I got to visit that Art Institute and loved it. I bought a Dega print. Good luck with the challenge!

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  16. What a fabulous place to have lunch - there sure as heck aren't any Picassos where I eat peanut butter sammiches... thanks for dropping by today, Gail. You have a fabulous, smart blog and it was nice to meet you.

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  17. Thanks for stopping by my blog earlier today! What an interesting piece of Picasso's. I will have to make a point of stopping by to see it in person next time I am in Chicago.
    Mary visiting from The View from my World

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  18. The Old Guitarist is my fave Picasso piece as well. He is haunting and beautiful.

    I love how you've organized your themes. I can't wait to hear about some of those tasty treats.

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  19. The Old Guitarist is my fave Picasso piece as well. He is haunting and beautiful.

    I love how you've organized your themes. I can't wait to hear about some of those tasty treats.

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  20. That's actually a really cool statue. I envy your musical ability. I was too stubborn and never learned in my youth, and now I have no time. :/

    Alex Hurst, fantasy author in Japan. "B is for Books" is my current post.

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  21. Yes and no on the subject matter and the writer's spiritual wealth, for me. It depends on the writer. I personally don't read much of Neil Gamian, because he's a bit graphic for me, but he's an excellent writer and just listening to him give a lecture shows you the man he is inside...

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  22. Gail, you might want to check out this blog, if you haven't already, and what he's writing about art.

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  23. Sorry, forgot to put the link in! Here it is just in case...
    http://dghudson-rainwriting.blogspot.com/

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  24. Kelworth and JHanna, thanks for visiting today. J-I pinned your canned apples. Now I'll be thinking about cinnamon apple pie with vanilla ice cream on top!

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  25. Thank you all for stopping by for the AtoZChallenge! I will be visiting all of your sites on Thursday and Friday.
    Pleased to hear you like my themes, Mel.
    Lisa, I've visited Mr. Hudson's site several times already :) Thanks.

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Aloha and thank you for visiting today!