26 Jun 2011

Picasso painting 'Buste de Femme' in Palestine

For the first time a Picasso painting entitled 'Buste de Femme' from 1943 has come to Palestine to be shown at the International Art Academy. It's a cubist deconstruction of a woman's face, dominated in grey. This exhibition was two years in the making and is a very exciting opportunity to build a new cultural international cultural dialogue in the occupied territory of Ramallah in Palestine. The Picasso painting costs £4.5 million and is on loan from the Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven. Only three people at a time will be able to see it to ensure the humidity, in the purpose-built viewing room, does not get damaged. 

Van Abbe museum's employees hang Pablo Picasso's "Buste de Femme" on a wall at the International Academy of Art Palestine in Ramallah.
What is also interesting is how Picasso can still stir the waters. Why does a Picasso, who died in 1973, still have such resonance in 2011? Also, perhaps art can play a more central role in difficult world zones where conflict has become the norm and cultural life is in limbo. Could we see other paintings being loaned from other prestigious galleries and what works would they be?..

At a cost of £50,000 in insurance and transport, the project began when Khaled Hourani, the director of the International Art Academy in Ramallah, visited the museum in 2008 and suggested a loan. "This started off as a crazy idea to bring a European masterpiece to a war-zone but I was only half-joking, " he said.

Detail of Picasso's, 'Buste de Femme' (1943) , oil-on-canvas work. Photograph: Peter Cox for the Guardian
From the Guardian Newspaper UK: "I want this to appeal to people like my mother and art students. Picasso remains inspirational because his work is related to war, peace and freedom."

Hourani hopes that 'Buste de Femme' will not be the last masterpiece to be exhibited in the territory. "We want this to become a normality but it is the last time I will do it. It has taken two years to bring one painting but the taboo has been broken and it will be easier for someone else to do it," he said. "The journey here adds meaning to the painting. It highlights issues of the freedom of movement and political agreement."

Read more on Van Abbemuseum here and AL Arabiya News


Anonymous said...

Bonjour David, c'est une magnifique action humaine et poètique pour les multiples incidences qui persécutent le peuple palestinien, très bel article qui "ressuscite" l'esprit de l'auteur de guernica; Amicalement.

David said...

Merci Thige, mon ami. Mais vous ne pensez pas fascinant que d'une peinture de Picasso peut encore susciter l'intérêt tant de choses, il est toujours un tel catalyseur pour le changement de temps après sa mort!.. David

Andy Parkinson said...

Slavoj! He's just great isn't he? Not sure I get what he's saying about the art though!
that is a great story about the couple cheating on each other with themselves
and (call me slow) I still have to work out what he is saying about the art.

vani said...

I actually enjoyed reading through this posting.Many thanks.
Pablo Picasso Paintings