- Pablo Picasso
- Buste de femme couchée
- signed Picasso and dated 14.8.70. (upper right)
- oil pastel and pencil on card
- 22.5 by 27.6cm.
- 8 7/8 by 10 7/8 in.
Galerie Beyeler, Basel (by 1971)
Private Collection, Basel
Thence by descent to the present owner
Winterthur, Kunstmuseum, Basel, Galerie Beyeler & Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Cologne, Picasso Ausstellung - 90 Zeichnungen, 1971-72, no. 84 (titled Buste de femme)
Basel, Kunstmuseum, Die Picassos sind da! Eine Retrospektive aus Basler Sammlungen, 2013, no. 159, illustrated in colour in the catalogue
As in many of his late works Jacqueline is not named as the subject, but is immediately recognisable from her raven-black hair, dark eyes and striking features that Picasso often portrayed in a distinctively asymmetrical arrangement. Instead she becomes part of the dialogue between artist and muse that is a particular feature of Picasso’s later work. As Marie-Laure Bernadec explains: ‘it is characteristic of Picasso, in contrast to Matisse and many other twentieth-century painters, that he takes as his model – or as his Muse – the woman he loves and who lives with him, not a professional model. So what his paintings show is never a ‘model’ of a woman, but woman as model. This has its consequences for his emotional as well as artistic life: for the beloved woman stands for ‘painting’, and the painted woman is the beloved: detachment is an impossibility. Picasso never paints from life: Jacqueline never poses for him; but she is there always, everywhere. All the women of these years are Jacqueline, and yet they are rarely portraits. The image of the woman he loves is a model imprinted deep within him, and it emerges every time he paints a woman’ (M.-L. Bernadac, in Late Picasso (exhibition catalogue), Musée National d’Art Moderne, Paris & Tate Gallery, London, 1988, p. 78).