Online Auction: 8–18 June 2020 • 2:00 PM BST • London
The World of Picasso: Including Works from the Collection of Marina Picasso 8–18 June 2020 • 2:00 PM BST • London

T he World of Picasso presents over 200 works spanning the artist’s entire oeuvre. Unmatched in the scope of his creativity by any other artist of his generation, Picasso produced a rich body of works that never fails to amaze, from pastels to linocuts, ceramics to silver plates. He turned his hand to virtually every medium and suffused it with his instantly recognizable yet constantly evolving style. Our online auction celebrates the enduring legacy of the inimitable Pablo Picasso.

Over sixty works in the sale come from the personal collection of the artist’s granddaughter, Marina Picasso. Marking an opportunity for her to share these private works with the rest of the world, the collection encompasses such diverse creations as Cubist sketches, experimental portraits of Jacqueline and even paint palettes, carefully preserved as relics from the creative process of this most exceptional artist.

Explore Highlights from the Auction

Picasso Through the Ages

Explore the exhibition in detail
Take a closer look at the works on view in our London galleries
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Birds

Picasso’s father was a breeder of pigeons and he encouraged his son to paint these feathered friends at a young age. Birds continued to play a significant role in Picasso’s life and art, as demonstrated by their frequent appearance in his paintings, drawings and ceramics. His drawing Dove of Peace was selected for the International Peace Conference in 1949, the same year that he named his daughter Paloma, the Spanish word for ‘dove’. Our varied selection of works on paper and ceramics featuring this favoured motif is led by the exquisite 1907 woodcut Le Poussin, once in the collection of Gertrude Stein.

Picasso's New Lease of Life and Love on the French Riviera

Bull Fighting

Picasso’s earliest surviving painting is a small portrait of a picador on a horse, made when he had just turned eight. His Spanish heritage – and specifically the cultural institution of bull-fighting – would continue to inform his production throughout his life. He identified with the bull-fighter, recognising their shared spaces of performance, creativity and courage. However, he would frequently infuse the combat of the bullfighting arena with mythological elements, elevating it into a world saturated with heroism and fantasy. Picasso once commented: "If all the ways I have been along were marked on a map and joined up with a line, it might represent a Minotaur."


Enter the World of Picasso

Autobiography

By the time of the Second World War, Picasso was an international celebrity and the world’s most famous artist. The press hotly pursued him, and he welcomed photojournalists such as David Douglas Duncan into his home to chronicle his life and work. Within our selection of wonderful works, we can identify the artist’s increasing preponderance with his identity as an artist: his particular manual uniqueness and indeed his own legacy. Picasso is quoted as once saying: "When I was a child, my mother said to me, “if you become a soldier, you'll be a general. If you become a monk, you'll end up as the Pope”. Instead, I became a painter and wound up as Picasso."


Jacqueline

Picasso produced more images of his second wife Jacqueline than any other muse in his life. Jacqueline provided Picasso with an extraordinary new zest for life and industry which animated the final twenty years of his production. While Picasso’s celebrated series of 15 paintings depicting Les Femmes d’Alger. derives from Delacroix’s The Women of Algiers, it is in fact inspired by Jacqueline. Picasso playfully explained: “Delacroix had already met Jacqueline”.

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