Blog 5:


Nude in a Rocking Chair, 1956 (NSW Art Gallery Website)

This artwork by Picasso can be interpreted in many ways and I guess that is the beauty of art. While it may mean something for someone, another will struggle to reach the same interpretation. For me, I see a faceless woman with rough body parts, which could symbolise Picasso’s interactions, feelings towards or appreciation for women. While at some stages I see a pleasant image of a powerful female character, at other times I see a detached, oppressed and vulnerable female.  The NSW art gallery comments on this artwork,

                    The painter has inscribed the disconcerting semblance of his own features. Her                       nipples are the tell-tale black pupils of his eyes, her serrated vagina is his                                 equally aggressive mouth. Having thus invaded her body, his own erupts in the                       manner of a physiological mutation. (NSW Art Gallery)

This description allows my understandings to deepen as Picasso’s own fragmented life and society resonates in the painting. Coming from the modernist era and a time filled with war, it becomes clear in this painting that Picasso is recreating the chaos of this time. We can appreciate this as a modernist artwork, as it challenges the former portrayal of art style and allowed people of the time to relate to the absolute new way of expressing themself. Picasso is very well known for his portrayal of women and so a parrallel can be seen between him and T.S Elliot. Similar to the way Eliot struggled with his interactions and relationships with women both in his personal life and in his works, the same can be said for Picasso. Both modernist artists use their depictions of women in a new way which confused society of the time and still continue to do so today. Overall this painting is a good example of a modernist artwork and shows people of today what the 20th century began to experience in their culture.

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