This win­ter, an ex­hi­bi­tion at New York’s MoMA ex­plores an of­ten over­looked body of Pi­casso’s work. Si­enna Vit­to­ria Lee-Cough­lin re­ports.

S/ - - CULTURE -

Most peo­ple know Pablo Pi­casso as the pro­lific painter who rad­i­cally re­shaped the art world at the turn of the 20th cen­tury. But as pro­lific as his paint­ings were, a sig­nif­i­cant part of his later oeu­vre, is of­ten over­looked: his sculp­tures. In or­der to ac­quaint gallery-go­ers with the Span­ish artist’s other tal­ents, a com­pre­hen­sive ex­hi­bi­tion, ti­tled Pi­casso Sculp­ture, will in­clude an ar­ray of sculpted works to cel­e­brate his lesser-known side.

Pi­casso, who was ed­u­cated as a painter, lacked the ex­ten­sive train­ing and me­thod­i­cal tech­niques pos­sessed by other sculp­tors. And yet this ab­sence of for­mal school­ing is what made his sculp­tures so fas­ci­nat­ing. Be­cause Pi­casso was not con­fined by tra­di­tion or rules, he cre­ated freely. “He did not know [the rules], so it was eas­ier for him to break them,” ex­plains co-cu­ra­tor Ann Temkin. “Pi­casso re­de­fined what sculp­ture could be again and again.”

The evo­lu­tion of Pi­casso’s sculpting ca­reer as it ebbed and flowed through pe­ri­ods of ac­tiv­ity and in­ac­tiv­ity, and through the use of new tools, tech­niques, and themes, is doc­u­mented through­out the ex­hibit. “Pi­casso not only rein­vented his own prac­tice many times over, but con­tin­u­ously set him­self apart from other artists,” says Temkin. The ex­hi­bi­tion is cat­e­go­rized into sec­tions that dis­play his sculp­tures from 1902 to 1964, be­gin­ning with the un­fold­ing of early cu­bism, mov­ing into the war-torn years and end­ing with midcen­tury as­sem­blage and sheet metal sculp­tures. Pi­casso Sculp­ture of­fers a fresh per­spec­tive on the iconic artist. “His con­stant ex­per­i­men­ta­tion, in­ven­tion, and drive to make things that had never been done be­fore are in­cred­i­bly com­pelling,” says Temkin. “This is what we would like for our au­di­ence to ex­pe­ri­ence.” Pi­casso Sculp­ture runs un­til Fe­bru­ary 7, 2016 at the Mu­seum of Mod­ern Art in New York City.

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