a dialogue with Picasso
80 masterpieces of Botero and Picasso!
The exhibition « Botero, dialogue avec Picasso » (« Botero: a dialogue with Picasso »), which will be held at the Hôtel de Caumont in Aix-en-Provence from 24 November 2017 to 11 March 2018, will present the Colombian master’s rich oeuvre from a unique perspective, which explores his artistic affinities with Pablo Picasso. Sixty works by Botero (oils, works on paper, and sculptures) will be complemented by twenty major works by Picasso, originating from the collections in the Musée National Picasso-Paris and the Museo Picasso in Barcelona.
Despite very different origins, lives, and careers, the two great artists share common geographical and cultural points of reference. In his youth, Fernando Botero (born in 1932) took an interest in the work of Pablo Picasso (1881–1973); he admired his rich palette and the monumentality and sensuality of the forms. But Botero particularly admired Picasso’s ‘nonconformism’ (sic). In both artists’ works, the distortion of the human body and volumes corresponds to a resolutely subjective view of reality. It also reflects a radically modern approach in the history of figurative art, which is at the root of each artist’s unique artistic language.
The respective careers of Botero and Picasso are characterised by a fundamental questioning of painting and art. At the Hôtel de Caumont, the exhibition ‘Botero, dialogue avec Picasso’ (‘Botero: a dialogue with Picasso’) provides an overview of the themes they tackled in their work, as visitors move from one room to the next :
- Portraits and self-portraits,
- The influences of the masters who preceded them in the history of art,
- Still lifes,
- Representations of major historical and political events,
- The world of the circus,
- Music and dance.
Among the major works are Botero’s diptych After Piero della Francesca (1998), the monumental Pear (1976), Pierrot (2007), and La Fornarina, After Raphael (2008); and also The Acrobat (1930), The Village Dance (1922), and Massacre in Korea (1951) by Pablo Picasso, and his interpretation of Velázquez’s Las Meninas (1957).
In addition to the paintings, the exhibition will present several sculptures by Botero, including his imposing Horse (1999), and twenty drawings by the two artists. A medium that was widely used by the two artists, the drawings will enable visitors to discover a less well-known aspect of Botero’s oeuvre and a more personal side of his artistic work.
« You cannot finish something if you do not begin. You have to finish something you have started, and take risks. In that regard, there is no better example than Picasso. » Botero
Designed and created by Culturespaces, and curated by Cecilia Braschi, the exhibition is part of the "Picasso-Méditerranée" project, initiated by the Musée National Picasso-Paris.
It is supported by the Société Marseillaise de Crédit.
Cecilia Braschi is an art historian specialising in twentieth-century art in Europe and Latin America. She works in the Musée d’Art Moderne - Centre Pompidou and at the Fondation Giacometti (Paris), as an exhibition assistant, research manager, and assistant curator. As such, she has published many studies and acted as assistant curator for major retrospective exhibitions held in France and abroad between 2001 and 2014 (at the Centre Pompidou, the Kunsthall in Rotterdam, the Museo Picasso in Malaga, the Pinacoteca do Estado de São Paulo, the Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janeiro, and the PROA Foundation in Buenos Aires). Working in Culturespaces since 2015, she has been responsible for the exhibitions held in the Hôtel de Caumont Art Centre, in Aix-en-Provence.
Appointed head of cultural programming and exhibitions for Culturespaces in 2017, Beatrice Avanzi is in charge of the Musée Jacquemart-André, the Musée Maillol and the Hôtel de Caumont-Center d’Art. As conservator of the Musée d’Orsay’s painting department since 2012, she curated major exhibitions such as The Douanier Rousseau - Archaic Candour or Beyond the Stars. The mystical landscape from Monet to Kandinsky. Agnès Wolff, head of exhibitions, Eleonore Lacaille, exhibitions manager at the Musée Jacquemart-André and Amélie Carrière, régisseur at Culturespaces, have also played an important role in the organization and realization of this exhibition Culturespaces.
Laurence Fontaine created the scenography. Since 1993, the architect and scenographer has been working on many projects. The most recent of these include, in 2017: David Hockney in the Centre Pompidou, Ed Van der Elsken at the Jeu de Paume, Robert Doisneau. Les Années Vogue in the Espace Richaud, Versailles, and Jardins in the Galeries Nationales of the Grand Palais.