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20th Century Genius

By scs325716 Feb 18, 2007 1229 Words
Every artist has his or her own style of painting. Each painting tells some sort of story or has some type of personal meaning to the artist. One of the most important figures in modern art is Pablo Picasso. Not only was Pablo Picasso a genius in the field of abstract art, but he also experimented with sculpting and ceramics. Pablo Picasso has taken the world to many places with his unique style of work which is why I believe he is considered to be a genius of the 20th century. Background

Pablo Picasso, born Pablo Ruiz, was destined to become an artist at a very young age. Born in Malaga, Spain on October 15, 1881, the young artist began to follow in the footsteps of Jose Ruiz Blasco—his father. Many say that Picasso's love for art was somewhat genetic, since his father was also an aspiring painter. At the young age of four, Picasso had already learned to draw detailed pictures, and by the age of 15 had already become technically skilled in drawing and painting. While most of us were busy learning and playing during our school years, Picasso spent his class time drawing sketches of his classmates (Chew, 1995). Needless to say he was indeed one of the most creative students in his class, and it would only be a matter of time before he began to pursue art as a career.

By the age of 16, Picasso had more than mastered the techniques necessary to become a successful artist. Although, most teenagers his age were probably out mingling with their friends and studying for school, Picasso was busy at work trying to perfect his skills as an artist. While attending the Academy of fine arts in Barcelona, where his father was appointed professor in 1896, Picasso had his own studio (Lycos, 2004). By the age of 19, Picasso had visited Paris for the first time and decided to settle there to pursue his dream. The Color Period's

Not many people can say that by the age of 20, they have found their true calling in life. However, Picasso made it evident that he was a gifted artist when he introduced the world to his own style of painting during what was known as "Picasso's Blue Period." The Blue Period marked a time in Picasso's career from 1901-1904 that defined the different real-life experiences that he had been exposed to throughout his life. It is rumored that Picasso's blue period began briefly after the death of a close friend, and the blue tones were used to reflect his feelings of bleakness during that time (GME, 1996). Most of his paintings during the blue period consisted of blind, impoverished, despaired people, and the paintings were done mostly in blue tones. One of the most famous pieces created during the period was called "The Old Guitarist," which depicts a saddened, blind, old man holding his guitar.

In 1905 after his blue period, Picasso's subject matter and color schemes that he used for his paintings began to change. From 1905-1906, Picasso developed the "Rose Period." Now instead of painting depressing figures with blue dull color tones, he began to paint circus people acrobats, and harlequin figures using pink and other earth tone colors (Gerten, n.d.). The rumor for this period is that Picasso began to brighten his colors and themes after he fell in love. A famous piece from his Rose period is called "Boy with Pipe." The painting features a young boy holding a pipe with a flower garland on his head. The painting definitely defines a happier period in Picasso's life when his paintings take on a more jovial look. Cubism

Following the color phases which reflected his own personal style and his personal feelings, Picasso decided to take art to a new level and began an entire new art movement. After teaming up with fellow French artist Georges Braque in 1907, they worked together to form a whole new art movement known as "Analytical Cubism." The concept behind cubism is that instead of viewing subjects from a single, fixed angle, the artist breaks the painting into pieces so that several different aspects/faces of the subject can be seen simultaneously ( When a person first views a piece of cubist art, it probably would resemble a collage, rather than an actual painting. However, Picasso wanted his viewer's to be able to study his paintings from different angles, and still be able to see the same picture from not matter where one was standing. To come up with this form of art as Picasso and Braque did is truly ingenius. Not only did they want people to view art from a different point of view, that also created a style of painting that artists would experiment with for years to come. Definition of Genius

In my own terms, the definition of a genius is someone who is very talented and influential in their field of study. Picasso defnitely fits this category. Not only did he begin paving his way as an artist at a very young age, but he also invented his own well-defined styles of art by the age of 20. At the age of 26, with the help of one of his comrades, he created a whole new art movement that took art to a whole new level. Cubism utilizes very unique and unusual artistic techniques, and it encouraged art spectators and fellow artists to look at art in a whole new light. The Cubism movement was one of many phases that Picasso experimented with throughout his career.

Picasso continued to create magnificent paintings, ceramics, and sculptures well into his 90's until his death in 1973. Picasso is one of several artists whos work had a positive impact on art world, and his work set the foundation for future artists to follow in his footsteps. In May of this year, Picasso's "Boy With a Pipe" (created during the "Rose Peroid) sold for $104 million dollars at Sotheby's Auction House. "Boy with a Pipe" is also one of the most expensive pieces of art work ever sold, beating the record set by Vincent Van Gogh's "Portrait of Doctor Gatchet," which sold for $82.5 million at Christie's Auction House in 1990. Pablo Picasso is definitley one of the most talented artists of the 20th century, and his paintings and other works of art are still recognized as treasures in the world today. During his life, Picasso created over 50,000 pieces of art making him one of the most well-known artists of his time. At the time of his death in 1973, Picasso's estate was worth well over $300 million, and today his pieces still sell at top dollar.

Chew, R. (1995). Pablo Picasso artist. Retrieved June 20, 2004, from
Gerten, C. (n.d.). The rose period. Retrieved June 23, 2004, from Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia. (!996). Pablo Picasso. Retrieved June 23, 2004,
Lycos, Inc. (2004). The life and times of Pablo Picasso. Retrieved June 20, 2004,

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