Sunday, November 22, 2020

Garçon à la pipe by Pablo Picasso

Pablo Ruiz Picasso painted this portrait of a Parisian boy wearing a wreath of flower in 1905 at the age of 24 during Rose period, a period in which Picasso preferred cheerful orange and pink colors contrast to cool, somber tones of the previous Blue Period. The oil on canvas painting depicts a Parisian boy in his teen years holding a pipe in his left hand, crowned with garland of roses.

Picasso was a Spanish painter, drawer, printmaker, ceramist, draughtsman and sculptor who lived most of his adult life in France. He is best known for co-founding the Cubist movement and for the wide variety of styles embodied in his work.

Garçon à la pipe was painting soon after Picasso settling at the Le Bateau-Lavoir in Montmarte, France. Little known about the boy but Picasso’s models were usually local people living in entertainment industry like clowns, acrobats and jugglers.

The record price auction at Sotheby's New York on May 4, 2004 was a bit of a surprise to art buyers, since it was painted in the style not usually associated with the pioneering Cubist artist. The painting was sold at a price of USD104,168,000 to the unknown buyer.

First bought for $30,000 by John Hay Whitney and his wife, Betsy Cushing Whitney in 1950, the painting was seen at distant intervals in major exhibitions dealing with the artist, from the 1967 Grand Palais retrospective in Paris to the 1996 portrait show at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The portrait was thus both famous in art history and forgotten. This maximized its impact.
Garçon à la pipe by Pablo Picasso

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