Virtual Museum

Pablo Picasso – Later works to final years: 1949–1973

Pablo Picasso was one of 250 sculptors who exhibited in the 3rd Sculpture International held at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in mid-1949. In the 1950s, Picasso’s style changed once again, as he took to producing reinterpretations of the art of the great masters. He made a series of works based on Velázquez’s painting of Las Meninas. He also based paintings on works by Goya, Poussin, Manet, Courbet and Delacroix.

In addition to his artistic accomplishments, Picasso made a few film appearances, always as himself, including a cameo in Jean Cocteau’s Testament of Orpheus (1960). In 1955, he helped make the film Le Mystère Picasso (The Mystery of Picasso) directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot.

Femne Au Roses Picasso 1956
Femme Au Roses, Picasso, 1956

He was commissioned to make a maquette for a huge 50-foot (15 m)-high public sculpture to be built in Chicago, known usually as the Chicago Picasso. He approached the project with a great deal of enthusiasm, designing a sculpture which was ambiguous and somewhat controversial. What the figure represents is not known; it could be a bird, a horse, a woman or a totally abstract shape. The sculpture, one of the most recognizable landmarks in downtown Chicago, was unveiled in 1967. Picasso refused to be paid $100,000 for it, donating it to the people of the city.

Pablo Picasso’s final works were a mixture of styles, his means of expression in constant flux until the end of his life. Devoting his full energies to his work, Picasso became more daring, his works more colourful and expressive, and from 1968 to 1971 he produced a torrent of paintings and hundreds of copperplate etchings. At the time these works were dismissed by most as pornographic fantasies of an impotent old man or the slapdash works of an artist who was past his prime. Only later, after Picasso’s death, when the rest of the art world had moved on from abstract expressionism, did the critical community come to see the late works of Picasso as prefiguring Neo-Expressionism.

Pablo Picasso died on 8 April 1973 in Mougins, France from pulmonary edema and heart failure, while he and his wife Jacqueline entertained friends for dinner. He was interred at the Château of Vauvenargues near Aix-en-Provence, a property he had acquired in 1958 and occupied with Jacqueline between 1959 and 1962. Jacqueline Roque prevented his children Claude and Paloma from attending the funeral. Devastated and lonely after the death of Picasso, Jacqueline Roque killed herself by gunshot in 1986 when she was 59 years old.

Picasso’s Artworks: Later works to final years: 1949–1973

Picasso Massacre In Korea

BOOKSTORE: Rare, Antiquarian, First editions, Illustrated Children's Books

Related Posts

Scroll to Top