About the MuseumThe Picasso National Museum (Musée National Picasso) is relatively new in the Parisian landscape and has become one of the flagship museums of Paris. The museum is dedicated to the works of an artist known as Pablo Picasso, probably the most famous artist of the 20th century, and it includes more than 3000 works of art: paintings, drawings, illustrations, sculptures and pictures of the artist's own life. The works were created between the years 1894-1973.
The museum is built in such a way that while you wander through it, you go through the original and chronological creation of Picasso himself and are exposed to informational items and relevant events from his time, year after year. Thanks to this form of presentation, you can understand Picasso's complex artistic development process and the points of reference in his artistic history and historical events during the creative process - the blue, pink, Cubist and surreal period. For example, you can see, along with pictures of Picasso from the 50s, cartoons depicting the attitude of the people of the period to his works. The museum also tries to show the influence of Picasso's granddaughter on his works, which have become much less abstract ever since she was born.
The museum is located in the Marais area in the third district of Paris.
In the museum you will also find works by other famous artists of his time - Matisse, Cezanne, Degas and others, and you can take note of the mutual influences of the artists on each other's works. On the second floor of the museum there is an area with temporary displays and on the third floor are the museum offices and the library.
The Museum's BuildingThe building where the museum is located was originally built for Pierre Aubert, the lord of Fontenay. Aubert's great wealth came in the wake of his role as a "salt taxer", which is where the building got the name "The Salt Building".
The buildings architect was Jean Boullier and is considered one of the most beautiful historical buildings in the Marais district.
Over the years, the ownership of the building has changed and its uses have been replaced. In 1671 the building was under the patronage of the Embassy of the Republic of Venice. During the French Revolution the building was confiscated and became property of the authorities and in 1815 it became an urban school of art. The building was purchased by Paris in 1964 and received the status of a building for preservation.
After a competition in which they tried to decide what the purpose would be, it was chosen to serve as a museum showing the works of the artist Pablo Picasso.
The Items in the MuseumIn 1968, a law was passed which allows heirs to pay the inheritance tax through art objects considered part of France's cultural heritage. Picasso, who used to say "I am the greatest collector of Picasso in the world" - has accumulated thousands of his own works, several works by other artists and a large number of primitive sculptures from around the world. Thus, after the death of Picasso in 1973, his heirs were persuaded to donate his works, in order to avoid a huge estate tax they could not pay. This collection, which included about 5,000 items, became a museum. Over time, another 1000 items were added to the museum.
The museum has four works that deserve special attention:
"Self Portrait" - a painting painted during a hard and lonely winter in 1901 in one of the most difficult periods in Picasso's life.
"Two Brothers" - a painting drawn in 1906 in Spain.
"Two Women Running on the Beach" - a painting that served as a Decorative curtain for the ballet "The Blue Train".
And "The Kiss" - a painting drawn in 1969. This picture was drawn a few years after he married his wife Jacqueline and began to paint also familiar subjects such as love life.