An exhibition of works from Picasso’s early Blue and Rose periods is expected to be a highlight of the European arts calendar when its opens this week in Paris before moving on to Switzerland’s Fondation Beyeler early next year.
“Picasso. Blue and Rose” opens in Paris on September 18 as the first major collaboration between the city’s Picasso Museum and the Musée d’Orsay, which will host the exhibition.
At its focus will be a large number of paintings and drawings from the years 1900-1906, described as a critical period in the artist’s career, and one that has yet to be covered in its entirety by a French museum.
In 1900, 18-year-old Pablo Ruiz (soon to sign his name Picasso) arrived in Paris at the recently opened Orsay train station, setting off a period of intense creativity and the emergence of his creative identity.
The following years, in which he travelled frequently between Spain and Paris, are characterized by a great diversity of styles, from the quasi-monotones of the Blue Period to the pink tones of works that followed.
More than 300 works will go on display at the show, which will be divided into 16 sections and include 80 paintings, 150 drawings, 15 sculptures and 20 prints along with archives, photographs and correspondence.
Together, the works present milestones highlighting the young Pablo Picasso’s artistic development and paving the way to his status as one of the most famous artists of the 20th century.
The exhibition will run through January 6 at the Musée d’Orsay. After that, the Fondation Beyeler outside of Basel will present a modified form of the exhibition — its focus beginning in 1901, with the start of the Blue Period, and bearing the title “The Early Picasso. Blue and Rose Period” — from February 3 to May 26, 2019.