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Picasso's (Evolving) Prints

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本帖最后由 choi 于 9-14-2021 15:29 编辑

Peter Saenger, Secrets of Picasso's Prints; Picasso's changes and experiments could drive his printer crazy. Wall Street JOurnal, Aug 28, 2021 (in the Review section that appears every Saturday)
https://www.wsj.com/articles/sec ... -prints-11630086908
https://gratefulamericanfoundati ... of-picassos-prints/

(i) The German and Jewish (Ashkenazic) surname Sänger
(noun masculine): "agent noun of [verb] singen; singer (person who sings, often regularly or professionally"

Remember a German noun always has the first letter capitalized.
(ii) Based in La Vergne (located at southeastern border of Nashville), Tennessee, Singer Corp (maker of sewing machines) was co-founded by Isaac M Singer, who, with mother's Dutch heritage and father's Hungarian and Jewish background, preferred to be known as American.

(i) This is an exhibition review on
Unseen Picasso. Pasadena, Calif: Norton Simon Museum of Art, Sept 3, 2021 - Jan 10, 2022.


"For nearly three-quarters of a century, from 1905 to 1970, Pablo Picasso (1881–1973) engaged in printmaking with a gusto and freedom of expression that is thrilling to experience. No print medium intimidated him, and his prodigious facility with intaglio (etching, drypoint and aquatint), lithography and linocut inspired him to deconstruct and reinvent customary practices. * * *

"Though prints are usually produced in multiples, one-of-a-kind impressions are sometimes pulled in the course of a print run. They may be proofs or undescribed states in an edition (a state is any stage in the development of a print at which impressions are pulled). A telling case is the 1946 lithograph Two Nude Women, a consuming subject for Picasso that compelled him to transform a recognizable subject into a minimalist abstraction. The Museum's unique impression of the eighth state—Picasso created 21 states exploring this composition—is also noteworthy as the sole print from this campaign to be printed in color.

(ii) What does a state mean in printing? See
Browse By Artist: Picasso, Pablo (Spanish, 1881-1973)
https://www.nortonsimon.org/art/ ... t/978/pablo-picasso

Search this Web page for Two Nude Women, and you will find
• Jan 5, 1946  eighth state (x 2);
• Dec 30, 1845 - Jan 5, 1946  unrecorded variation between seventh and eighth states;
• Jan 21, 1946  eleventh state;
• Jan 24, 1946  twelfth state;
• Jan 31, 1946  fourteenth state;
• Feb 1, 1846  fifteenth state.

And this is what this WSJ review means by saying, "Unlike painting, where the final image generally hides the earlier versions, prints can be made at different stages in a work's development, preserving a record of its evolution."  See (e) below.
(iii) intaglio (n; etymology; Italian, from Latin; Did You Know?)
(iv) What is an Etching and How Are Etchings Made?  Southfield (15-mile air distance northwest of Detroit), Michigan: Park West Gallery, Drpt 20, 2018.
(v) Pablo Picasso   Two Nude Women (Les Deux femmes nues [sic; in the English-language Web, various upper or lower cases for first letter of each word; in French-language websites, all lower cases and L in Les in upper case only at the beginning of the sentence])  1946.  Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), undated
("The motif of one figure watching another figure sleeping recurs in Picasso's art throughout his career. Variations include scenes with two women, a man and a woman, and a mythical creature with a woman. The female figures were often inspired by the women in his life at the time. One explanation for the persistence of this theme is the fact that Picasso worked at night and had ample opportunity to observe his lovers sleeping")

(A) Museum History. Norton Simon Museum of Art (Norton Simon Museum for short), undated
("The history of the Norton Simon Museum begins with the Pasadena Art Institute. The Institute was founded in 1922 * * * as a privately endowed, nonprofit institution. * * * A pivotal point in the history of the Pasadena Art Institute came in 1953, when it received a bequest of almost 500 artworks from the estate of Galka E Scheyer [female; Jewish; born in Brunswick in German Empire and died in Los Angeles]. Galka Scheyer represented the [expressionism] artists Kandinsky, Klee, Jawlensky and Feininger, among others. * * * In 1964, the Museum decided to expand its programs. It commissioned the Pasadena-based architectural firm of Ladd & Kelsey to design a new 85,000-square-foot structure on the original Carmelita Park site. On November 24, 1969, the new Pasadena Art Museum opened. * * * Unfortunately, debts incurred during the new Museum construction were a persistent and insurmountable burden. * * * the Trustees [of the Museum], in 1974, reached an agreement with Norton Simon")
(B) expressionism
("Its typical trait is to present the world solely from a subjective perspective")
(ii) Norton Simon
(1907 – 1993/ "He was at one time one of the wealthiest men in America.[1] At the time of his death, he had amassed a net worth of nearly $10 billion [unclear whether it was current value or value at the time of, say, death]; Jewish; section 2 Business career)

(d) "A high-profile art sale at Sotheby's in Las Vegas in October includes Picasso works expected to bring in at least $70 million."

Picasso: Masterworks from the MGM Resorts Fine Art Collection. Sotheby's, undated
https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/ ... ollection?locale=en   
("Live auction: 23 October 2021  20:00 EDT Las Vegas"/11 works[, none of which is a print])

(e) "The Norton Simon itself has around 800 Picasso prints in its collection.  But as 'Unseen Picasso' makes clear, not all prints are created equal. Curator Gloria Williams Sander has chosen a small number of works with characteristics making them 'rare or unique,' including the artist's handwritten notes to the printer, personal dedications and experiments with color. And she has included excerpts of 'Suite 347,' a rarely seen magnum opus that Picasso produced in his late 80s, which offers a kind of summing up of themes and influences over his whole creative life. * * * Unlike painting, where the final image generally hides the earlier versions, prints can be made at different stages in a work's development, preserving a record of its evolution.  The figures in the etching 'Two Nude Women II' (1930) have touches of Picasso's typical distorting style—one woman has a large back and too-small head, the other sits in a twisted, physically unlikely posture. Before printing the entire run, the printers gave the artist proofs, and Picasso chose the Norton Simon copy as bon à tirer, French for 'good to print'—the ideal version of what he was looking for. In red ink, he added 1931, the year of the print run, in Roman numerals—a habit of the artist's at the time * * * In 1968, at the age of 86, he devoted himself for almost seven months to 'Suite 347,' a series of 347 prints * * * 'Unseen Picasso' includes the Norton Simon's copy of the first print in the suite, 'Picasso, His Work, and His Public,' which shows the artist [the bald, short (5' 4'') Picasso] facing a circus performer [male at right] in the costume of an earlier era, recalling some of his famous early paintings [Picasso's paintings of male  circus performers did not wear leotard, but one-piece suit with sleeves and pants]. A bareback [bare-breasted?] rider cavorts in the background, with a wall full of eerie faces behind her representing the public. Picasso drew himself as he was: short, with wrinkled cheeks. He was always clear-eyed."
(i) Suite 347
(A) Picasso, His Work, and His Public (Picasso, son œuvre, et son public) from Suite 347  1968.  MoMA, undated
("At eighty-six years old, Picasso embarked on his largest print series, Suite 347, named for the number of sheets it contains. This project, completed in less than seven months [between Mar 16 and Oct 8, 1968: en.wikipedia.org], was facilitated by Paris printers Aldo and Piero Crommelynck, who had moved to the South of France to set up an etching workshop near his residence. Wide ranging in its motifs, Suite 347 engages spectacle and theater, as if presenting a stage on which Picasso reviews his life and art")

Click to enlarge. Norton Simon Museum does not put this print online. Indeed, few websites do -- about a handful, none of which explains the print. (The MoMA page is the only one which says something but not about this print.)
(B) Picasso, His Work, and His Public (Picasso, son œuvre, et son public) are the English and French titles of this print.
• French-English dictionaries translate "son" as "his, her, its" (before noun masculine). See
• French articles and determiners
(section 2 Determiners. section 2.1 Possessive determiners)
(C) Suite 347: Memories: Circus with 'The Giant' and Self-Portrait as Baby–Old Man. Norton Simon Museum, undated
is another print from this Suite.
(ii) Two Nude Women, II (Deux Femmes Nues, II), Harvard Art Museums, undated
(Object Number 30.1965)

• Picasso created quite a few paintings, prints with the theme of two nude women. It is unclear to me why this was II.
(iii) French-English dictionary:
* nu (from Latin [adjective masculine] nūdus [nude]; which is adjective masculine; adjective feminine nue, masculine plural nus, feminine plural nues): "nude"https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/nu#French
   ^ French grammar
      ("Most adjectives, when used attributively, appear after their nouns")

(f) "Françoise Gilot, Picasso's romantic partner of the time, wrote in her memoir about the image's [about the print 'Dove']chaotic birth."
(i) Françoise Gilot
(1921- ; full name: Marie Françoise Gilot; "At 21, Gilot met Pablo Picasso, then 61. Picasso first saw Gilot in a restaurant in the spring of 1943. Dora Maar, the photographer who was his muse and lover at the time, was devastated to learn that Picasso was replacing her with the much younger artist. After Picasso's and Gilot's meeting, she moved in with him in 1946. They spent almost ten years together")

The Wiki page includes a photo of an old Gilot.
(ii) If you search images.google.com with ("young" Françoise Gilot), you will see what she looked like.

(g) " 'Head of Woman, No 3 (Dora Maar)' appears in two versions in the exhibition, showing that sometimes Picasso couldn’t let go of earlier drafts of an image. Made in 1939 * * * For this work, the artist used a scraper on copperplate with determined strength, creating a print with a range of tone similar to watercolor. In the first version or 'state,' he uses a blue tint and creates cross-hatching that darkly emphasizes the contours of Maar's face and her rivulet-like hair. In the black-and-white seventh state, he has filled in the background, giving the portrait a 3-D feel. Picasso marked both prints with a note that he wanted to keep them for himself."
(i) Dora Maar
(1907-1997; real name: Henriette Theodora Markovitch; born Croatian; table: Partner(s) Pablo Picasso (1935–1943); "Dora Maar, a pseudonym she chose * * * In 1935 she was introduced to Pablo Picasso and she became his companion and his muse")
(A) Head of Woman, No 3 (Dora Maar). Norton Simon Museum, undated
https://www.nortonsimon.org/art/detail/P.1978.3  (Date: 1939; Accession Number: P.1978.3)

Judging from the WSJ review, this is the first state. See next.
(B) Norton Simon Museum does not have a stand-alone Web page for the eighth state, which, however, is included in the exhibition's Web page. See the near button of  

Press release: Unseen Picasso. Norton Simon Museum, July 22, 2020 (yes, 2020, more than a year ahead of the exhibition)
https://www.nortonsimon.org/abou ... 021/unseen-picasso/  
("Head of Woman, No 3 (Dora Maar), 1939 [state not mentioned in the caption]")

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