The Echo of Picasso at the Museo Picasso Málaga features 85 works by works by 55 artists as Willem de Kooning, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Louise Bourgeois and Jeff Koons, in some cases shown in direct dialogue with works by Pablo Picasso but above all presented as an echo of his creative activity.
The exhibition focuses on the influence of Picasso’s artistic practices on today’s world and on the current international art scene. Thus while it includes works by Picasso alongside those of artists who acknowledged his influence on their own practice, such as Francis Bacon, Martin Kippenberger and Maria Lassnig, it also presents the work of contemporary creators such as Claire Tabouret and Rashid Johnson.
Curated by Eric Troncy, The Echo of Picasso is part of the international programme Picasso Celebration 1973-2023 and is organised in collaboration with the Fundación Almine y Bernard Ruiz-Picasso and with the support of the Musée national Picasso-Paris and the Spanish National Committee for the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the death of Pablo Picasso, which benefits from Telefónica as corporate collaborator of the Spanish programme. This exhibition at the MPM is carried out in collaboration with the “la Caixa” Foundation.
From 3 October 2023 to 31 March 2024 the Museo Picasso Málaga will be presenting the exhibition The Echo of Picasso. Pablo Picasso made use of a remarkable variety of styles while his exceptional influence on 20th-century art has lasted into the 21st century. In addition to Cubism, his principal contribution to modern art is the freedom that characterises every aspect of his painting, sculpture and graphic work. There is wide-ranging consensus regarding Picasso’s profound impact on the art world, allowing it to be said that no previous artist attracted adherents and admirers on a comparable mass scale, in addition to critics. For this reason and fifty years after the artist’s death, the concept of “echos” seems a relevant one, both in terms of the freedom offered by the passing of time and the resonance produced by new voices. In the context of the Museo Picasso Málaga, The Echo of Picasso allows for the possibility of analysing contemporary art through the dialogue that artists from around the world have established with the work and figure of Pablo Picasso.
The exhibition brings together 55 artists in a dialogue with Picasso established either in “real time”, during the artist’s lifetime, or in the present day. Firstly, it presents Picasso’s work alongside that of artists who acknowledged his influence on their output, including Francis Bacon, Maria Lassnig, George Condo and Martin Kippenberger, while secondly it features contemporary artists such as Claire Tabouret, Rashid Johnson, Brian Calvin and Farah Atassi, 17 of whom have created works specially for The Echo of Picasso, which are thus on display for the first time. Among the 85 works present in the exhibition, 18 are by Picasso himself, including notable examples such as the large-format canvas Massacre in Korea from the Musée Picasso-Paris, which has not been seen in Spain for 15 years.
Curated by Eric Troncy, The Echo of Picasso is specifically based on this influence of Picasso’s artistic practices on modern art and in particular on the current global art scene. A French critic and exhibition curator, Troncy has organised more than 100 monographic exhibitions at the art centre Le Consortium in Dijon, of which he is co-director, and at numerous other renowned art institutions. In his text written for the exhibition’s catalogue he observes that the uniqueness of this exhibition is firstly due to the fact that it “explores the remarkable presence of Picasso in our visual imagination and secondly the profound mark that his constant quest for new forms of artistic expression has left on the concerns of the most recent generations.” For his part and again writing in the exhibition’s catalogue, Michael FitzGerald, senior professor of art history at Trinity College, Hartford, confirms that “Picasso tirelessly championed this absolute freedom as an artist. This is perhaps his most long-lasting echo.”
The exhibition thus functions as an echo in an enclosed space, exploring the visual experience of these resonances through exceptional loans of works by artists from the 1920s to the present. In this sense, rather than attempting to establish an exhaustive catalogue, which would probably encompass the majority of artists from the last 100 years, the exhibition project proposes a dream-like journey through the echoes of Pablo Picasso’s remarkable experiments across different periods, styles and generations. The Echo of Picasso allows visitors to rethink the artist’s oeuvre and to rediscover a Picasso for the present day, revealed by the gaze of creators of other generations. To facilitate this the museum has produced an audio guide in Spanish and English which offers detailed information on the works on show and explains the exhibition’s argument, in some cases with quotations from the artists themselves.
PUBLICATION AND EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL ACTIVITIES
The accompanying catalogue completes the exhibition with the biographies of the 55 artists represented in it. It also includes a text by its curator, Eric Troncy, which sets out the concept of the exhibition and an enlightening essay by the Picasso expert Michael FitzGerald. Both the Spanish and English editions are published in hardback, cloth-bound and fully illustrated.
Once again, the Museo Picasso Málaga is organising workshops for adults on some of the artistic techniques represented in the exhibition, in addition to a lecture series given by artists and experts. This cultural and educational programme is complemented with an extensive one for children and families, another for schools and a social participation project aimed at women at risk of marginalisation.
PICASSO CELEBRATION 1973-2023
The fiftieth anniversary of the death of the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso took place on 8 April 2023. As such, this year has been a celebration of his life and artistic legacy in France, Spain and around the world. The French and Spanish governments have worked together on an international programme through a binational committee comprising cultural and diplomatic bodies from the two countries.
Picasso Celebration 1973-2023 centres on approximately fifty exhibitions and events held in cultural institutions in Europe and America which together offer an art-historical analysis of Picasso’s work. Accompanied by official celebrations in France and Spain, this commemorative programme allows for a reassessment of research and interpretation of the artist’s work, particularly during the major international colloquium scheduled for the autumn of 2023, which will also coincide with the opening of the Centre d’Études Picasso in Paris.
The Spanish National Committee for the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the death of Pablo Picasso and the Musée national Picasso-Paris are delighted to be supporting this exceptional programme, which is benefiting from Telefónica as corporate collaborator of the Spanish programme. Telefónica, a telecommunications company and global leader in the supply of technological, digital and communication services, is participating in all the events celebrating the work of Spanish artist Pablo Picasso on the anniversary of his death. Through this initiative Telefónica’s aim is to contribute to the dissemination of knowledge of the work of this great Malaga-born artist - widely regarded as one of the most prolific painters of all time - by making his art more accessible to all sectors of society. This exhibition at the MPM is carried out in collaboration with the “la Caixa” Foundation.
Our thanks are also due to Bernard Ruiz-Picasso, the artist’s grandson and president of the Fundación Almine y Bernard Ruiz-Picasso, Madrid (FABA), a member of the Franco-Spanish committee responsible for the organisation of this celebration and member and president of the Executive Board of the Museo Picasso Málaga.