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Few days ago I have visited Pablo Picasso Museum in Barcelona (here is the official website). I went there with my memory full of abstract paintings, and honestly I didn’t expect much from the experience,  maybe because I didn’t understand his art. Fortunately, I was very surprised at what I found in the museum.

Pablo Picasso was born in 1881 to a father who was an art teacher and painter himself. Obviously the boy was influenced by art from his early years, and his first work is very realistic, true to nature. Consider the following work (below three images and biographical data were taken from this website):

This is called “First Communion” and was painted in 1895 or 1896,  when Picasso was fourteen or fifteen years old.

This one was completed in 1897 (he was sixteen) and is called “Science and Charity”, his father served as a model for the doctor. In the museum I saw this picture and it was “the other way around”, meaning that the doctor sat on the left, not on the right as pictured above.

Seeing those images I thought that Picasso,  being born to a father who was painter himself, must have gone through a period of forced study of the “right way” of painting. He went to schools teaching him how painting should be done and he excelled at it, as above images show. But later, when he already made a name for himself,  I think that he could (and did) free his imagination and creativity. He started, at least in my eyes, to paint like a child would… Just see this picture:

Isn’t it something a child could paint seeing pigeons on the balcony? Picasso painted that one in 1957 (it’s called “The Doves”).

To me, it seems that he freed himself from all the crap school taught him about painting, especially how the end result should look like, and decided to free his child-like imagination and creativity, or way of showing the world. We gave it fancy names, but really… just look at images of his work you can find in the web. Most of them, to me, look like something a kid would do…

My favourite painting of Picasso is this one (image copied from this website):

I never knew that he painted also something like that… This comes from the year 1917 and is called “Mujer con Mantilla”. For me, the best painting in Barcelona museum, which managed to taught me something about Picasso and made me look differently at his work.