Picasso is famous for his artistic style and his paintings. He was a prodigy; by the age of 13, he had already seen one of his works exhibited in Barcelona.
The great artist revolutionized classic art with movements like Cubism and this earned him worldwide fame. But it seems that there are still mysteries about Picasso which no one has been able to discover yet…
Some Interesting Facts About Pablo Picasso
1- His real name was not Pablo Picasso:
We all know that actual name Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso, but when he became famous everyone just called him by his first three surnames, which we all now so well.
2- He designed the set for a Russian ballet in 1917:
He was invited to draw the sets and costumes for a Russian folk dance show called Le Tricorne. Picasso agreed, coming up with 60 designs before choosing just one. It is still unknown why he didn’t use any of his other ideas.
3- A fan broke into his house and stole his underwear:
In 2006 an obsessed Spanish woman broke into Picasso’s home at night and took 5 pairs of his pants! And even though she wore them almost constantly, her plan failed because no one came forward saying they recognized the women wearing them…not sure why you would wear someone else’s underwear? Maybe it was because they are genuine works of art?
4- He was a ladies man:
Picasso had many affairs with women, even though he was married. He once said that “art is the most intense mode of individualism that the world has known”. So it’s obvious why he would need to sleep around, he didn’t want anyone judging him for his art?
5- The Pope tried to get him into bed:
In 1953 Picasso received an invitation from the Vatican asking him to design 50 ceiling panels for a new museum. He accepted and requested that Joan Miró and Graham Sutherland be assigned as his assistants while working on the project. However when the time came for them to go work in Rome, they were told by some higher power that they were not allowed to go, but no one knows who exactly…
6- He was a war hero:
In 1916 he fought in the trenches of the Pyrenees. In 1917 he suffered from a fever and was sent to Barcelona to recover. This is where he created his famous painting called “The Charnel House”. It’s thought that it shows how terrible war really is.
7- When he died his last words were “Drink to me”:
Picasso died on April 8th, 1973 after choking on a nub of a cigar that he had been using as a toothpick, which then became lodged in his larynx and finally killed him after an agonizing 5 days. Before dying though, at 4 am on April 7th, he told those by his bedside ‘Pido que me llevan a casa que aquí me muero’ which means “I ask that you take me home. I am dying here”
8- He didn’t think much of the Mona Lisa:
In early 1958 Picasso said to an American couple who visited him in his studio: “The Louvre is an old whorehouse. The only things worth looking at are the plumbing.” This shows how little he cared for any other artist’s work besides his own. In fact, most art critics agree that this was true! Although if it weren’t for several key people helping him create masterpieces, we would not have been able to enjoy so many wonderful works of art.
9- He had an eye for the ladies:
Picasso was known to have fathered 8 children by 4 women in his lifetime, but this is not what makes him so interesting. What makes him stand out is that when he was only 17, he fathered his first child with a woman named Rosie. However, when Rosie broke it off with Picasso, her family married her off to someone else and she moved hundreds of miles away! How did Picasso go about asking for another baby after all of that?
10- He was friends with Salvador Dali:
It’s hard to believe this guy could be likable at all, even if he painted some amazing pieces of art. Still they were very close, so much so that they even wanted to get married to the same woman! Yes, this is true.
11- The name of his painting “Guernica”:
“Guernica” was a small Spanish town close to Picasso’s birthplace which was bombed by Nazi planes in April 1937 during the Spanish Civil War. This tragedy inspired him to create his masterpiece for the World Fair in Paris, and when he finished it he wrote: “For Guernica.”
12- When he died, his ashes were buried in a shed:
Even though he painted some iconic pieces like “The Old Guitarist”, “Two Acrobats” and others…he didn’t want them around once he died. Instead, he asked that his friends and family cremate him and mix his ashes with those of a Spanish girl named Maria whom he had been fond of. They then put the mixture in a cardboard box which was buried under a house he owned, but it is no longer there as they recanted this request shortly after burying the mix because someone tried to dig up the ground to steal some of Picasso’s ashes!
There you have it; 12 interesting facts about Pablo Picasso that might make you look at his work in a whole new way. It also goes to show how much one man can do when he sets his mind on something. Picasso believed that everyone has their own style and even though we may say what we like or don’t like, there is no problem with it as long as we are not trying to force our views on others. He believed life was too boring if everything was the same.