Yesterday Hubby and I went down to the Gagosian Gallery at 522 W 21st Street here in Manhattan. They have a show of Pablo Picasso artworks, running until June 25, 2011.
The pieces center around his work and relationship with a young French woman named Marie-Thérèse Walter.
The gallery’s website says:
“In 1927, on a street in Paris, Picasso encountered the unassuming girl, just shy of eighteen years old, who would become his lover and one of modern art’s most famous muses. “I am Picasso” he announced. The name meant nothing to Marie-Thérèse so he took her to a bookshop to show her a monograph of his paintings and asked if he could see her again. Flattered and curious, she agreed, and thus began a secret love affair that would establish Marie-Thérèse as the primary inspiration for Picasso’s most daring aesthetic experiments in the decade to come.
The exhibition spans the years 1927 to 1940 and includes several works never before seen in the United States. The curators have assembled the group of more than eighty works to show a rarely articulated range of Marie-Thérèse’s influence within Picasso’s imagery.”
Security was tight – there were several guards in each room. Hubby and I asked each other what might be the total value of the combined artworks.
“Nude, Green Leaves and Bust (1932) became the most expensive painting sold at auction when it was bought in New York for $106m (£65.5m), and can now be seen at Tate Modern.”
Let’s see – 80 x 106m = $12,800,000,000.00 – is that right? Almost 13 Billion dollars worth of art? In one small gallery downtown?
Of course, each piece wouldn’t be worth that much. Let’s cut the value in half – say 6 Billion dollars worth of art.
No wonder security was tight.
Here are some images from the gallery’s website:
Do yourself a favor and check out this glorious exhibit while you can. I don’t know when you’ll get the chance to see so many Picasso works under one roof again.
While wandering through the rooms, I thought of the marvelous short story “The Picasso Summer”, by Ray Bradbury. An American tourist is walking along a French beach, and encounters another man – drawing figures in the sand with an ice cream stick. Of course, it is Picasso – who smiles and walks away. And the tourist is left behind, frantic to try to capture the images somehow, but of course the tide comes in and washes the sand clean.
Go and see this exhibit while you can!
On our walk home, after seeing the art in the gallery, we encountered this art outside, on the side of a school:
And – oh yes! This was May 21, 2011 – the supposed “end of the world”.
It didn’t happen.