No one would define Picasso as a "wayward poet." Except Picasso. So far his poems have been like a footnote, an annotation to his painting. Although Gallimard published the monumental Écrits in 1989 - with more than 340 poetic texts - until 2008 they were not translated into Spanish; and there are still some unpublished.
But it is in writing that Picasso's obsessive visions beat. And they have been summarized in the ABC volume . Picasso poet, a study parallel to the exhibition that opens the Picasso Museum in Barcelona - until March 2020, and then travel to Paris. Here are some concepts of the Picassian alphabet:
ANDALUSIA. «I was born of a white father and a glass of Andalusian brandy I was born from the girl of a 15-year-old single mother born in Malaga in Los Percheles the beautiful bull that engendered my jasmine-crowned forehead,» Picasso wrote in May 1936 Andalusia will always be a recurring image and symbol of its Spanish and Mediterranean roots: mittens with mantilla, still lifes with guitars, bullfighters in the square, olive trees ...
FOOD. It symbolizes childhood memories but also the visceral rejection of Franco's coup d'etat, the famine after World War II or, in a kinder tone, the eroticism or plasticity of the painting.
EROTICISM. Although he captured several erotic scenes in his paintings, Picasso poems are even more unleashed: long and complex phrases, chaotic, evoke the desire and the friction of two bodies, their caresses, struggles and orgasms.
WAR. The Civil War produced a profound impact on Picasso, who would never return to Spain after Franco's victory. Almost as an annotation to Guernica, his verses on the devastation of Spain can be read: «on the skin torn from the house / knocks on the forgotten window in the center of the infinite emptiness / the black honey on the sheet torn by icy flames / from the sky the eagle throws up its wings ».
UNIDED. Several unpublished manuscripts are published in the ABC. Picasso wrote and drew anywhere, from a newspaper page to a green and blue Air France card, on the back of which he pointed in black pencil: "It is useless to insist the Oedipus complex is in the toilet" (March 21, 1939) .
LISTS Picasso always makes lists: of the purchase, of colors, of things, of regrets, blacklists, of the laundry, "the list of so many categorical foolishness in balance on horseback on the nose of the clever one swallows the spring" (sic) ...
WORDS Picasso argued that one could "write a painting with words" and "paint the sensations in a poem." How was his poetry? Surreal, playful, exaggerated, rarely lyrical, full of repetitions, with abundant winks to Gongora ... Always plastic. The meaning of the poem begins in the stroke and the color of the pencil. Picasso crushed the language just as he deconstructed the painting.
MINOTAUR It is almost always his alter ego. Sometimes it presents itself as a blind and vulnerable minotaur, others as the prototype of male power. It is a recurring image in the Picassian imaginary, next to that of the bull.
WOMEN. From his first wife Olga Koklova to his last love, Jacqueline Roque. All Picasso women have starred and inspired both his painting and his poems.
TEXTS. «The poet Picasso is little known outside the specialized circles. But poetry cannot be separated from his life and pictorial work. Perhaps it is where Picasso is most, lui même, as the French say, ”explains the curator of the Picasso Museum, Claustre Rafart, curator of the Picasso poet exhibition and one of the authors of the ABC. "This is an intimate exhibition, in which you are not going to read manuscripts but to see the writing and the brutal graphics of his poems, intimately linked to his life and his painting," he adds.
VERBENA. "He takes the verbena by car," Picasso wrote in Paris, recalling party nights and excitement in the squares, the verbenas of Sant Joan in the Barcelona of his youth.
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