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The Museu Picasso in Barcelona is pleased to present Pablo Picasso’s personal collection of art works. Presenting over one hundred works - including some forty paintings by Renoir, Cézanne, Rousseau, Braque, Matisse and others -, this range of art, gathered together over a whole lifetime paints, in its own way, an intimate portrait of Picasso, the man.

The nature of this collection, however, is unique and personal. Picasso did not possess the typical qualities, often all consuming and accumulative, of a standard art collector. Above all, this collection is not the fruit of a deliberate or pre-established project. Art works were added to the mess of his successive art studios, thrown on the floor haphazardly, framed or unframed, in the midst of his own paintings, or hung on the wall in a disorderly fashion without there ever existing the intention of putting any of them on show to the general public. In some ways, this collection forms the “backgrounds” to his own art studios.

« My friends» : is the way in which Picasso referred to his collection. « After all, why shouldn’t one inherit from their friends?», he confessed one day to his dealer, Kahnweiler. « In essence, what is a painter? A collector who wants to make a collection by doing paintings that he likes by others» 

Bernadac, Marie-Laure, Michael, Androula, Picasso, propos sur l’art, París, Gallimard, 1998

Creation happens before possession. With his collection, Picasso maintained a relationship of creator to creators (past or present).

Picasso wanted to donate this collection to the French State on condition that it was kept intact. When he died, his heirs respected his will. The Picasso Museum in Paris is home to the essential parts of this collection, added to by other works that were donated later by heirs.

Pablo Picasso’s personal collection was exhibited in Munich and in Paris in 1998 and 1999 and this is the first time it can be seen in our country. As a museum devoted to the artist, nothing has more sense than showing together with the permanent collection of the Museu Picasso in Barcelona, the collection of works by other artists that Picasso kept all his life.


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