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A/ Lee Miller portrays Picasso

Lee Miller photographed over a thousand images of Picasso during their long friendship. The photographs of Picasso have a more spontaneous and documentary air to them then than much of her other oeuvre. It is her longest running body of work. Over the years, Lee Miller’s keen eye captured the ever-evolving Picasso in his many-faceted existence. [+]

“His flashing black eyes have fascinated everyone who has even only seen Picasso but those who meet him feel thrown into an exciting new equilibrium by the personality of this small, warm, friendly man whose name means modern painting.”

Lee Miller, “Picasso Himself” in Picasso. London, 1960.

  • Picasso in his studio
  • Rue des Grands Augustins, Paris, 1944
  • © Lee Miller Archives.

In all of the images, Picasso exudes a magnetic energy that Lee Miller prodigiously captured through her lens. It is when immersed in work or involved in play with his concentration elsewhere that the artist’s vitality and presence is best felt in her images.

The dark intensity of Picasso’s eyes often stopped the camera, impenetrable like the masks he was so fond of wearing. Her Surrealist eye always at play, Lee Miller’s visual vocabulary often uses spatial qualities, juxtapositions of objects, and reflections which add another dimension to her images of Picasso’s world.