The Carnival

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Pablo Picasso

Spanish, 1881 - 1973

The Carnival, 1962

  • Not On View

Lithograph on paper

Dimensions: 25 3/4 × 19 3/4 in. (65.4 × 50.2 cm)
Image: 25 × 19 1/4 in. (63.5 × 48.9 cm)

Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Victor J. Cervenak, 1996.4

Pablo Ruiz Picasso (1881-1973), born in Malaga, Spain, is undoubtedly the leading figure in 20th century Western art that broke from the long-standing tradition of realistic representation in favor of a totally new visual language of abstraction. During his lengthy career, Picasso reinvented himself several times, and in so doing, produced an extraordinarily wide range of paintings, sculptures, graphic art and ceramics that changed perceptions of art more profoundly than any other artist of the 20th century.As a young bohemian artist residing in the lively Monmartre quarter of Paris, Picasso was never far away from the dancers, musicians, and circus performers who entertained audiences in the theaters and cabarets of the district. Picasso identified with the itinerant clowns, harlequins, and Pierrots he often depicted, who were regarded as social outsiders-poor but independent. Picasso's lithograph, The Carnival, exemplifies his ability to evoke the persona of a clown in the simplest and most spontaneous manner, as a combination of whimsical graphic-like symbols rendered in bright, primary colors.

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