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Ask-a-Librarian: Picasso's Signature

Ask-a-Librarian: Picasso's Signature

Picasso's signature

The Barnes has both an art and horticulture library. When visitors or students have a question about the Barnes, they ask a librarian. In this case, the librarian passed the question along to Barnes Deputy Director of Art and Archival Collections and Gund Family Chief Curator Judith F. Dolkart.

Q: Looking at Picasso’s Group of Catalans in Montmartre: Pinchot, Mañach, Casagemas, Brossa, Picasso, and Gener (BF2049), I am not at all convinced that the signature in the lower right corner is his. Can you explain?

A: This is an extremely early work, from when Picasso visited Paris and stayed in the Montmartre quarter (see the windmill in the background). In these very early works, Picasso signed his paintings as R. Picasso, which stood for Ruiz Picasso. He later dropped the Ruiz. The signature in the lower right corner of Group of Catalans in Montmartre is in keeping with early examples of the artist’s signature.

 bf2049

Image: Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881­–1973). Group of Catalans in Montmartre: Pichot, Mañach, Casagemas, Brossa, Picasso, and Gener, 1900. Oil on panel. BF2049

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Picasso's signature

Ask-a-Librarian: Picasso's Signature