Picasso nudes to be reunited after 85 years

The trio of nudesImage copyright
Succession Picasso/DACS London

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The works were last seen together at Picasso’s first full-scale retrospective

Three nudes depicting Pablo Picasso’s lover are going on display together for the first time in 85 years.

A new show at Tate Modern will see the works reunited, having last been shown alongside each other in 1932, the year they were painted.

Picasso created the nudes, featuring Marie-Therese Walter, in five days.

He had begun the affair with the woman, who was 28 years his junior, five years previously but it was kept a secret as he was married.

Rare international loans

The Mirror, Nude in a Black Armchair and Nude, Green Leaves and Bust were displayed when Picasso held his first full-scale retrospective in Paris and Zurich.

It was the first the world knew of the blonde woman in his life. She had been 17 when they met, while the artist was 45 and living with wife Olga Khokhlova. Picasso and Walter went on to have a daughter together in September 1935.

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1932 was a pivotal year for the artist

Picasso’s relationships are central to understanding his art, said Tate Modern exhibitions director Achim Borchardt-Hume.

“Picasso is a little bit like the Church of England,” said the co-curator of the show. “You can’t talk about the latter without talking about Anne Boleyn.

“You can’t talk about Picasso without talking about his wife and his lover.”

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Succession Picasso/DACS London

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A close-up look at The Mirror

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Succession Picasso/DACS London

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The Dream has never been exhibited in the UK before

But he admits the age gap between the pair is “tricky” for today’s audience.

The trio of nudes will arrive at Tate Modern’s Picasso exhibition, along with other rare international loans, after “two years of diplomacy”, curators said.

Other highlights of the 2018 show include Le Reve (The Dream), which has never been exhibited in the UK before and sold for more than £100m.

Picasso 1932 – Love, Fame, Tragedy will focus on an “extraordinary” and “pivotal” 12 months for the artist. It runs from 8 March to 9 September next year at Tate Modern.

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