ON POETRY, WRITING AND RANDOM CULTURAL MATTERS

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Picasso Museum, Barcelona

After my last post I have clearly had to leave town, for the sun mainly. Nothing gives me greater pleasure than  to read a weather forecast that says Barcelona 22 degrees, Paris 6. Day one of my Easter break in the Catalan capital and we head to the Picasso Museum.

First tip - buy a six museum pass for a mere 30 euros and skip all the queues - perfect. No standing around like a sheep.

The museum is the largest collection of Picasso's work, but if you are expecting weeping women, lots of bull-fighting and sculpture, you will be disappointed.

What you will find is a surprising amount of early work of absolute brilliance: his early portraits of his family and friends are wonderful, and the theatre scenes from turn of the (twentieth) century Paris are lovely.

The painting that spoke most to me this time was Waiting (Margot), probably because she looks as worn out and in need of a holiday as me.

His obsessive work in preparation for Las Meninas is something to see - pity there is no reproduction of the Velasquez to make the comparison, but that's what iphones are for I suppose, as everyone was calling it up on wikipedia.

The museum buildings are actually worth visiting on their own- gorgeous noble houses with courtyards, impressive cellars and intricate carved stone work.

The current special exhibition is of Picasso's ceramics - an  reinvention of the Greek.

Go early to avoid the hoards and try not to spend too much in the gift shop.

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