Tuesday, April 23, 2013

My boy Pablo

With my mind on other things, I failed to note the passing of Pablo Picasso forty years ago last week.  The 8th to be exact.  Which might be two weeks ago.  In any case, he was 92.

I ran across a weird obituary of him.  Mostly stuff I knew.  But this stood out ...

In 1969, his 88th year, he produced out of his volcanic energy a total of 165 paintings and 45 drawings, which were exhibited at the Palace of the Popes in Avignon, France. Crowding the walls of that venerable structure, the Picasso array drew exclamatory throngs and moved Emily Genauer, the critic, to say, "I think Picasso's new pictures are the fire of heaven."

Explaining the source of this energy, Picasso said as he neared 90, "Everyone is the age he has decided on, and I have decided to remain 30."

God almighty.  165 paintings?   At 88?  This is how the great ones punish us.  They never get off our backs, even forty years later.

I do like this thinking about the phenomenon of age.  I've decided to remain 14.

Here, apropos of nothing, is Picasso's buddy Matisse with a bird ...




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