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Old 09-24-2001, 03:31 PM
Cindy Cindy is offline
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Red face Picasso's Confession

Picasso's Confession


"When I was young, like all the young, art, great art, was my religion; but with the years, I came to see that art, as it was understood until 1800; was henceforth finished, on its last legs, doomed, and that so called artistic activity with all its abundance is only the many formed manifestation of its agony. Men are detached from and more and more disinterested in painting, sculpture and poetry; appearances to the contrary, men today have put their hearts into everything else; the machine, scientific discoveries, wealth, the domination of natural forces and immense territories. We no longer feel art as a vital need, as a spiritual necessity, as was the case in centuries past.

Many of us continue to be artists and to be occupied with art for reasons which have little in common with true art, but rather through a spirit of imitation, through nostalgia for tradition, through mere inertia, through love of ostentation, of prodigality, of intellectual curiosity, through fashion or through calculation. They live still through force of habit and snobbery in a recent past, but the great majority in all places no longer have any sincere passion for art, which they consider at most as a diversion, a hobby and a decoration. Little by little, new generations with a predilection for mechanics and sports, more sincere, more cynical and brutal, will leave art to the museums and libraries as an incomprehensible and useless relic of the past.

From the moment that art is no longer the sustenance that nourishes the best, the artist may exteriorize his talent in all sorts of experiments with new formulas, in endless caprices and fancy, in all the expedients of intellectual charlatanism. In the arts, people no longer seek consolation, nor exaltation. But the refined, the rich, the indolent, distillers of quintessence seek the new, the unusual, the original, the extravagant, the shocking. And I, since cubism and beyond, I have satisfied these gentlemen and these critics with all the various whims which have entered my head, and the less they understood them, the more they admired. By amusing myself at these games, at all these tomfooleries, at all these brain-busters, riddles and arabesques, I became famous quite rapidly. And celebrity means for a painter: sales increment, money, wealth.

Today, as you know, I am famous and very rich. But when completely alone with myself, I haven't the nerve to consider myself an artist in the great and ancient sense of the word. There have been great painters like Giotto, Titian, Rembrandt and Goya. I am only a public entertainer who has understood his time. This is a bitter confession, mine, more painful indeed than it may seem, but it has the merit of being sincere."


PABLO PICASSO (FROM: ORIGIN 12, January 1964 Cid Corman, Editor Kyoto, Japan.; cited by Artcompasas Amsterdam: GOTOBUTTON BM_1_ http://www.euronet.nl/users/artcompas/index.html )
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Old 09-25-2001, 09:51 AM
mame mame is offline
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Hadn't seen this. Thank you.

And he certainly had the time to do it. All of his women cleaned his dirty underwear, cooked his meals, were easily accesible sexual gratification, organized his studio, catalogued his works, etc.
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Old 09-25-2001, 10:12 AM
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cagathoc cagathoc is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by mame
And he certainly had the time to do it. All of his women cleaned his dirty underwear, cooked his meals, were easily accesible sexual gratification, organized his studio, catalogued his works, etc.

I know.

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Even though he felt that way (the quote above, I mean - not the relationship with women), I still see a lot of his work as exciting and valid. It sounds like he didn't recognize the value of his work.
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Old 09-25-2001, 05:37 PM
mame mame is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by cagathoc


I know.

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Even though he felt that way (the quote above, I mean - not the relationship with women), I still see a lot of his work as exciting and valid. It sounds like he didn't recognize the value of his work.

Now this is interesting comtemplation fodder. Assuming you are not referring to monetary "value". Gotta think about this re artists who "achieve" in their own time and their perceptions/recognition re value of their own work............
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Old 09-26-2001, 08:42 PM
N.Stevenson N.Stevenson is offline
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I'm sure Picasso did recognise the value of his work. Look at his comments in the 20s and 30s in comparison.

There is a telling phrase in this, i.e

"I am only a public entertainer who has understood his time."

...when you think about it, that is quite a claim.
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Old 10-03-2001, 03:49 PM
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berkking berkking is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by N.Stevenson
...when you think about it, that is quite a claim.

....and a very accurate one!

Nik
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Old 10-04-2001, 03:00 AM
Sergey Sergey is offline
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He wrote everything I thought about him...
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Old 02-13-2007, 12:59 AM
Hanska Hanska is offline
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Re: Picasso's Confession

"Picasso's Confession" is a HOAX, has been for half a century.

See below:

FindArticles > Publications > Free > News & Society > Independent, The (London) > Mar 14, 1994 > Article

Letter: That notorious fake
Independent, The (London), Mar 14, 1994 by From MR SIMON WILSON

Sir: Picasso's 'confession', quoted in your correspondence columns on 3 March as evidence of the artist's bad faith, is notorious. It was invented by the Italian writer Giovanni Papini and is one of a series of imaginary interviews published as Il Libro Nero in 1951. Other 'interviewees' included Stendhal and Kafka.

In 1955, Picasso's biographer Pierre Daix exposed the fake in Les Lettres Francaises. It was more recently denounced by Picasso's current biographer, John Richardson, in the catalogue of the 1988 Late Picasso exhibition and again, less than a year ago, by the art historian and critic Richard Dorment in the London Spectator, which had published it as genuine.

Yours sincerely,

SIMON WILSON

Curator of Interpretation

Tate Gallery

London, SW1

10 March

Comment Page 013

Copyright 1994 Independent Newspapers UK Limited
Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning Company. All rights Reserved.


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http://www.findarticles.com/p/articl...4/ai_n14858546
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Old 02-13-2007, 01:44 AM
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stlukesguild stlukesguild is offline
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Re: Picasso's Confession

I have come across this "confession" several times and had always assumed it was fraudulent. Either that or it was the drunken ramblings of a depressed artist following a bad couple of days in the studio. The writing style itself sounds nothing like the more legitimate quotes of Picasso that I have read. of course... as the central figure of Modernism... and an artist who as an adolecent had more skills as a "realist" painter than most of today's realists of the ARC vein... Picasso was the artist who needed to be debunked in order to valididate their own work. Recently I have come across claims that Picasso's "realist" paintings of his youth were actually painted by his father (once again calling his skills into doubt). Unfortunately, his skills are aparent to anyone with an eye for ability in drawing (not "rendering") in nearly any of his mature works. Personally, I don't know why one assumes that one can only validate one's own work by debunking that of those who do not follow in the same path.
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Old 02-13-2007, 02:30 PM
LGHumphrey LGHumphrey is offline
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Re: Picasso's Confession

Hanska, thanks for finding this old thread and indicating Papini's hoax.

A representational artist whose work I admire very much has "Picasso's confession" on his webpage and when I pointed out to him that it was a fake he chose to leave it there, in a sort of "yeah, but in spite of being a fake it still shows what a bunch of rubbish modern art is" attitude.

Imho a lot of modern art IS rubbish but it doesn't need a phoney self-denunciation to prove it.
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Old 02-13-2007, 03:35 PM
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Re: Picasso's Confession

If this was by picasso, I don't see the problem with it. It seems a plausible and candid set of statements. If anyone has a problem with it, please say what it is because I think it seems fine, although slightly disconcerting.

Regards. Anthony.
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Old 02-13-2007, 09:20 PM
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Re: Picasso's Confession

Well the most obvious problem with this quote is the fact that it is not by Picasso. As such, it purports to suggest certain ideas about Picasso's art and Modernism in general that were most certainly not held by the artist himself. Perhaps if Picasso were a Post-Modern "ironist" (?) like Koons, Currin, or Hirst he might have been expected to say something along these lines... freely admitting that as an artist he was nothing more than an entertainer... or a highly paid clown. However... such does not sit well with the real intentions of Modernism or with Picasso's far less jaded and materialistic thoughts on art:

Art is dangerous. Where it is chaste, it is not art.

Art is not the application of a canon of beauty but what the instinct and the
brain can conceive beyond any canon.

We artists are indestructible; even in a prison, or in a concentration camp, I would be almighty in my own world of art, even if I had to paint my pictures with my wet tongue on the dusty floor of my cell.

Technique is important...but only on the condition that one has so much that it completely ceases to exist!

"No! Painting is not interior decoration! It is an instrument of war; for attack and defense against the enemy."

Art is a finger up the bourgeoisie a$$.

A good picture, any picture, has to be bristling with razor blades.
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Old 02-14-2007, 02:26 PM
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Re: Picasso's Confession

After reconsidering, I agree with you Stukes.

Regards. Anthony.
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Old 02-15-2007, 12:03 AM
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Re: Picasso's Confession

Quote:
stlukesguild wrote:
Personally, I don't know why one assumes that one can only validate one's own work by debunking that of those who do not follow in the same path.

It's true, people do put others down to put themselves up, and not only in art. Sometimes it has the opposite effect of what they want.
As something of an aside, Picasso did have a bad day in the studio, at least once, and it was caught on tape, in the movie that was made of him in I think 1952 -- do you know it? "The Mystery of Picasso"' directed by Henri Clouzot. "Ça va mal", he says of a big canvas-in-progress; "ça va très très mal ..." Uplifting stuff
I watch it occasionally for a feel-good experience.

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Old 02-15-2007, 03:30 PM
LGHumphrey LGHumphrey is offline
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Re: Picasso's Confession

Picasso's lovers from Fernande Olivier to François Gilot (and probably Jacqueline Roque too) mentioned what a basically unsatisfied person he was, and that what he painted during the day he scratched out during the night, and what he painted during the night he scratched out during the day. Amazing that he had such a prolific production considering the amount of stuff he scratched out or overpainted.
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