Picasso's Nudist Streak
In 1932 Picasso had recently turned 50. As he painted alone in his studio, his wife ran a busy, fashionable household downstairs. Out in society the artist wore spats and drove a Hispano-Suiza. When one of his works sold for a record price at auction in February 1932, the art world took it as a sign that the Great Depression was over. The opening of the retrospective he was preparing for that summer would be attended by 2,000 well-known Parisians, all in evening dress. Yet, despite fame and good fortune, Picasso hankered after the freedom he’d enjoyed as a young artist. For several months his voluptuous young mistress, Marie-Thérèse Walter, had been filling his paintings. Pictured at a window, by a mirror or resting her head on a red cushion, asleep or awake, she enlivened his dreams and inspired his work.
From “Picasso’s Nudist Streak” by Fiammetta Rocco for 1843
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