Saturday, November 1, 2008

Picasso Pair-ups

Paris is celebrating three new blockbuster museum exhibitions, where Picasso’s work is paired up with masterpieces from art history.

The Louvre is presenting “Picasso and Delacroix.” At the Musee d’Orsay they’ve got “Picasso and Manet.” The Grand Palais features “Picasso and the Masters.”

These exhibitions are a brilliant idea, and real crowd-pleasers. The only problem with is that Picasso’s work doesn’t look much like the stuff they’re pairing him up with.

So here at GurneyJourney we’d like to propose some more logical Picasso Pair-ups.

Picasso and Masterpieces of Clown Art


Picasso and the Chicken Carcass


Picasso and Motel Tikis


Picasso and Cow Flops

27 comments:

Sean Craven said...

Now that is just mean. But it certainly raises a smirk...

There have been a few Picasso pieces I've responded to -- Guernica and his goat sculpture, for instance -- but as a general rule his stuff leaves me scratching my head and wondering what people see in his work.

Guess I'm just a philistine. Somebody's got to do it...

Erik Bongers said...

Yes, it's deliciously mean indeed!
As one famous documentary director would say : Shame on you Mr. Gurney ! Shame on you !

p.s. Love the Chicken Carcass.

But remember...Picasso could draw this at the age of 14!

Where we are all strugling to improve our realistic drawing skills...Picasso was already bored with them before the end of puberty.

Stapleton said...

Modern art.....Oh Yeah ...my grandaddy used to love that s--t!!

Drew said...

While I'm no fan of Picasso, Erik's got a great point. I remember seeing studies he did at age 7 that were simply amazing.

But comparing that last piece to a cow pie made me laugh my butt off.

Super Wu-Man said...

oh dang, was hoping to see some photos from your halloween, haha, if you dress up in tron glasses on a regular day i couldnt wait to see what you were going to wear on halloween, i was betting you were one of those guys who decorated every inch of your house with halloween decorations and spider webs, haha!

Bowlin said...

In the first pic, I wanna know what that woman's wearing. ??? Heh.

Erik Bongers said...

Here are some more early works of picasso.
The more you see of them, the more you realize that he clearly made a very concious choice to "quit the cloisters of...".

Can you imagine that the 15 year old boy of this self portrait painted this piece?

And this academic drawing he made at the age of 13(!) would look nice on the Art Renewal Center's website. Strange...I didn't find it there.

Tom Scholes said...

:D Hehe.

Look out for picasso debatesss.

Maria said...

I'd say all too right, Gurney! Why are people bringing up Picasso's early studies? We're talking about his later work and his 'conscious choice' to make jarring rubbish. It seems people are impressed by Picasso's early work, hailing them masterpieces, when this is typical of many trained young painters with talent! Is it the effect of surprise? That this work is from the author of well-known monstrosities and that he could actually produce some good pieces? Then that is sad that his best work was done in his early life. A talent turned sour.

dketchek said...

While I usually believe that we should respect the talent of other artists, even if we do not personally like their stuff, I must say that I had to laugh and applaud your pairings. I consider the art of Picasso to be very sad - for the talent, as shown in the early examples, is extraordinary. He is, perhaps, the closest we have come to a child prodigy in painting. What beauty could have come from that brush. Instead, for the most part, we got ugliness.

ramon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ramon said...

Mr. Gurney, this entry is hilarious! I find the cult of Picasso more than a little ridiculous :)

In response to people bringing up his early studies...ok so he could execute decent (let's face it, not amazing) academic works when he was a teenager. Given that his dad was an academic painter who had been training him for some time, this fact is less than remarkable, and certainly no indication of genius. Not to mention that larger pieces were probably done with extensive corrections by his father.

http://www.artrenewal.org/articles/2003/Best_of_ARC/best1.asp?msg=574&forumID=48
http://www.picassocontrepicasso.com/research_docs_e.htm

stephen erik schirle said...

haha

Jeremy Elder said...

Way to go! Your comparisons are more than accurate!

Steven K said...

Actually, there is a growing case that Picasso did not paint ANY of those early works:

http://www.picasso-fraud.com/

Jim, I think you have absolutely the right idea. Picasso's work would be best exhibited in the seedier Las Vegas Casinos, where it would fit right in and best reflect the personality of the artist, who was the PT Barnum of painting. Although that may be an insult to Barnum, who was an honest entertainer by comparison.

Random York said...

Bwa-Ha!Ha!Ha! (I struggle with the spelling. It's good!

Speck said...

Never would have guessed Holsteins were so artistically talented. I'll never look at a cow pasture the same way again.

DavidStill said...

Saying "but he painted well in his early years!" to justify the crap he painted later as good art, is like saying "I CAN make delicious chocolate muffins, but have some of these piss muffins instead!"

Also, a lot of artists painted amazing things when they were young back then. Finnish painter Akseli Gallen-Kallela painted this in 1884, at the age of 19. Artemisia Gentileschi painted this in 1610, at the age of 13! The basic art education was just a different thing back then, and people started hardcore realistic training at a very young age. So saying that Picasso COULD paint neat stuff when he was young is really not saying much.

r8r said...

Suddenly, with the passing of Clement Greenberg and some of the other critics who supported Abstract Expressionism, it's become fashionable to kick Picasso. That's what the show at the Grand Palais is really about. The art world has re-embraced figuration and narration.

As you pile on the bandwagon, cheering one and sneering at the other, remember the artistic freedoms you have now, courtesy of fauvism, futurism, post-impressionism, expressionism, orphism, and all the other isms of the past 100 years.

They've allowed otherwise marginal art forms to be taken seriously: comics, pottery, weaving, graffiti... Without them we all might still be subject to the rigid forms and hierarchies of Official Art.

And every time some form of Official Art takes hold (Soviet Russia, Communist China, Nazi Germany, Mormon Utah...) we're all the poorer because of it.

You can like or dislike Picasso's work, but spare a thought for what that work symbolizes -- the breakup of old forms, and the exhilarating freedom of evolution into new ones.

Steven K said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKVNpFq6hOc

Gringo said...

I believe that bashing Picasso is the wrong way to go Mr Gurney. Despite that I have an inclination for more figurative realistic art forms, I still respect what Picasso did, and find his contribution to the art world (history?) valuable, for the amazing variety of work he did.

Super Wu-Man said...

haha!

i think its hilarious that in gurneys last post he says (jokingly im sure) picassos are resembles cow "S", haha, then his next post is well...see ya later i'm gone for a month, haha!

thats genius, post somthing that will proably get some reactions then take off, brillant and hilarous, all the more reason i think this was just a JOKE or just to have fun.

i mean, come on, you cant take too seriously a man who uses a picture of himself wearing tron goggles for his profile image, haha.

but again i think its hilarious he posted that then took off! comic genius!!!!!!

but yeah, dont take it too serious, he's posted blog post after blog post on the old school artist with nothing but praise, so if he wants to have a tiny bit a fun, then dont be to hard on him...you have to admit its funny, and if picaso should have his freedom to create what he wants, then shouldnt gurney be free to say what he wants...can put a double standard...right?

anyway, lets not take this cow "S" to heart....it wouldnt look right....

John-Paul Balmet said...

Not to get too off topic, but I have to say, from a visual standpoint, I have to disagree with the r8r comment:

"And every time some form of Official Art takes hold (Soviet Russia, Communist China, Nazi Germany, Mormon Utah...) we're all the poorer because of it."

Even though the Nazis and the Soviets were very repressive totalitarian regimes, they created some amazingly fantastic works of art. The poster designers of the Nazi era created some of the most visually effective and well designed works of the 20th Century--some of which are still highly influential to graphic design today across the world. The idea behind the posters is heinous and horrible, but the artists were in fact talented. Some of the Soviet propaganda posters and sculptures are simply awe inspiring in their scope and clarity of message (it's just a shame what the talent was used for.)

My point is, art, for me, is a success if you can communicate in a way that resonates with other human beings in relation to the human experience--be that a fiction created by the artist that brings to life dreams people can relate to, or a reflection/commentary of the natural world around us all. I think Picasso fails for so many people not because it is "ugly" but because it seems like he has no regard for his audience. It seems it is art that says, "I did it, deal with it," without trying to have a visual conversation with the viewer.

Ruckbuick said...

From someone with your talent, it's just sad that you just don't get Picasso. It's like the 20th century just pass you by...but I,m guessing you happy anyway ;-)

rock said...

From someone with your talent, it's just sad that you just don't get Picasso. It's like the 20th century just pass you by...but I,m guessing you happy anyway ;-)

C├ęcile said...

Dear James Gurney
I often come to your blog - thank you for sharing your thoughts on art and illustration, thank you for sharing all you know with people from around the world.
I am French and I live in Paris, and I'd just like to tell you how good it feels that someone actually makes fun of the P. man. Whether one likes his work or not is not the point: why couldn't we mock him a little from time to time, just as we do with every other painter?
I had a good laugh and I am now in a good mood every time I see a poster for the exhibitions...

S. Weasel said...

Pahahahaha...oh, sweet Jesus, that was funny.

But surely you don't mean to denigrate the precious artistic freedoms bought for us by the hard work and innovation of the lonely evil clown artist.