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Pablo Picasso

Guernica

1937

Work in front of witnesses

On April 26, 1937, in the midst of the Spanish Civil War , the Basque town of Guernica was bombed by German and Italian planes, in support

to Franco's nationalist camp .

Several hundred civilians perished

feels and the city is in ruins: the

carnage is total. The inter-

national is moved and the newspapers

from all over the world recount the tragedy .

Picasso, then installed in Paris, cannot remain the

arms crossed. And since he was asked to

lize a fresco for the Spanish pavilion at the Universal Exhibition in Paris, he decides to evo-

see the Sacred Mas of Guernica on a canvas  of

almost 8m wide by 3.5m high. During _

A month, locked up in his studio, he will channel his anger and work methodically to understand

lay down a work like no other. Taking the side of black and white to recall the photos of

            war broadcast in the press ,  he multiplies the

            preparatory drawings and carefully studied the

            composing . And above all, he proposes to his

            loincloth, photographer Dora Maar, to attend the

            genesis of the work. Day after day, she immor-

            thus talizes the different stages of execution of the

            cloth. And if this report is of documentary interest

                                      undeniable ment , it is before

                                      everything  of one  valuable remedy for

                                      Picasso himself: as and when

                                      measure of his work, he relies

                                      indeed on  the successive shots

                                      of Dora Maar to modify her

                                      painting, perfect the balance of blacks and whites and appreciate the accuracy of its composition.

Dora Maar, Guernica, Stage I , 1937

Dora Maar, Guernica, Stage III , 1937

What we can take away:

It is rarely enjoyable to work while someone is watching what we are doing over our shoulder. However, soliciting an outside perspective even as we progress in our project can be interesting. The impartiality of the observer implying a more objective view than ours, he will be better able to question the validity of our decisions to help us move in the right direction.

Related topic: Method
Related topic: Cooperation
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