The Arts Society Marina Alta takes a closer look at Picasso’s Guernica


THE next meeting of the Arts Society Marina Alta will be held at Salones Canor in Teulada-Moraira on November 5.

Doors open at 9.45am for registration and the presentation starts promptly at 11am.  Complimentary coffee will be available for members and guests at that time.

The presentation, Guernica: The Biography of a Painting, will be given by Peter Atkinson.

He will explain how in January 1937, six months into Spain’s Civil War, Pablo Picasso was commissioned by the Republican government to provide a work for Spain’s pavilion at the international exposition in Paris that would stimulate support for the Republican war effort.

Inspiration did not arrive until April 26 when, at Franco’s request, German and Italian aircraft bombed civilians in the Basque town of Guernica.

The first sketches were drawn on May 1 and within five weeks, Picasso had completed Guernica.

At 3.5 metres by 7.8 metres it is a huge painting in black, white and grey, a powerful statement of the horrors of war and one of the world’s most recognisable works of art.

Peter will explore the atrocity that inspired Picasso and follow Guernica’s itinerant life from its initial showing in Paris in 1937 to its Spanish homecoming in 1981, first to Madrid’s Cason del Buen Retiro, then to the Prado and finally the Reina Sofia Museum of Contemporary Art.

Along the way, Peter will also introduce the artist, his women and the painting’s relationship with other artists.

Peter Atkinson studied Geography at the University of Birmingham in 1965 and spent his working life as a market research consultant, initially in London and from 1977 in Toronto (Canada).

He retired to Spain in 2000 and now lives in Jesus Pobre.

Published by
Linda Hall

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