Picasso, Matisse and Maillol: The Female Model

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14 February – 26 May 2013

Pablo Picasso, Seated Woman, c. 1923, pen and black ink, © Succession Picasso / DACS 2013
Pablo Picasso, Seated Woman, c. 1923, pen and black ink, © Succession Picasso / DACS 2013

This display presented prints and drawings by Pablo Picasso alongside those of his contemporaries Henri Matisse and Aristide Maillol to explore the central role of the female model in their creative processes.

The display rans concurrently with the exhibition Becoming Picasso: Paris 1901.

Picasso, Matisse, and Maillol all worked in a variety of media, moving between painting, drawing, sculpture, and printmaking.

Henri Matisse, Seated Nude Woman with a Tulle Blouse, 1925 © Succession H. Matisse / DACS 2013
Henri Matisse, Seated Nude Woman with a Tulle Blouse, 1925 © Succession H. Matisse / DACS 2013

Many of the drawings in this display served as sketches or detailed preparatory studies for works in another medium, whilst the prints were produced as independent works of art.

They demonstrate different approaches to the use of line and tone to create a graphic representation of the body, ranging from Picasso’s emphasis on outline to Matisse’s exploration of light and shadow and Maillol’s search for a sense of sculptural monumentality.

Stylistic similarities in their techniques suggest a broadly shared set of artistic concerns.

This display was selected by Helen Higgins, MA student at The Courtauld Institute of Art, as part of the activities of the IMAF Drawings Centre at The Courtauld Gallery.

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