"Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone" Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso, formally Pablo Ruiz Picasso, (October 25, 1881 to April 8, 1973) was one of the recognized masters of 20th century art.
His name in full was Pablo (or El Pablito) Diego José Santiago Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno Crispín Crispiniano los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz Blasco y Picasso López. His father was José Ruiz y Blasco; his mother, María Picasso y López. In his early years he signed his name Ruiz Blasco after his father but, from about 1901 he switched to using his mother's name.
Picasso was born in Málaga, Spain, and is probably most famous as the founder, along with Georges Braque, of Cubism. However in a long life he produced a wide and varied body of work, the best-known being the Pablo Picasso/Blue Period works which feature moving depictions of acrobats, harlequins, prostitutes, beggars and artists.
While Picasso was primarily a painter (in fact he believed that an artist "must" paint in order to be considered a true artist), he also worked with small ceramic and bronze sculptures, collage and even produced some poetry. "Je suis aussi un poète," as he quipped to his friends.
Several paintings by Picasso rank among the most expensive paintings in the world. On May 4, 2004 Picasso's painting 'Garcon à la Pipe' was sold for United States dollar USD$104 million at Sotheby's, thus establishing a new price record.
Picasso hated to be alone when he wasn't working. In Paris, in addition to having a distinguished coterie of friends in the Montmartre and Montparnasse quarters, including André Breton, Guillaume Apollinaire, writer Gertrude Stein and others, he usually maintained a number of mistresses in addition to his wife or primary partner.
Picasso's most famous work is his depiction of the German bombing of Guernica, Spain; the painting'Guernica'. This large canvas embodies for many the inhumanity, brutality and hopelessness of war. The painting of the picture was captured in a series of photographs by Picasso's most famous lover, Dora Maar, a distinguished artist in her own right. The 'Guernica' hung in New York's Museum of Modern Art for many years; Picasso stipulated that the painting should not return to Spain until democracy was restored in that country. In 1981 the 'Guernica' was returned to Spain and exhibited at the Casón del Buen Retiro. In 1992 the painting became one of the main attractions in Madrid's Reina Sofía Museum when it opened.
Picasso was extremely talented as a painter and draughtsman, even by the standards of the world's great artists. He worked with equal facility in oil paint, watercolor, pastels, charcoal, pencil, and ink. He famously rendered complex scenes as just a few geometric shapes in his mixed-media Cubist works but he also produced masterful realist portraits throughout his life. His pen and ink sketches of his friends from the Cubist era and afterward are valued for their understated intimacy, examples of the fluidity of his skills. Indeed, Picasso moved with ease among the plastic arts despite limited academic training (he finished only one year at the Royal Academy in Madrid). His natural talents were augmented by a ferocious work ethic that survived into the final years of his long life.