Dancing Picasso

I love it when my French friend Pascale texts me : Je suis à Roissy, je te prends le Côté Sud ?" I'm at Roissy-Charles de Gaulle airport. Shall I buy Côté Sud for you? She's such a darling, she knows it's one of my favorite magazines and that I miss it more than French wine or cheese....well as much as real French croissants anyway !
So today, I had my precious magazine in hand, savouring each page of it and particularly the articles about Picasso and the various houses where he stayed in the south of France, among which the Château de Vauvenargues which will be opened to visitors this coming september. I was so charmed by the photo introducing the article, taken by American war photographer David Douglas Duncan, a close friend of the artist that I wanted to see more of the pictures he took of Picasso.

Duncan stayed with Picasso and Jacqueline, the artist's last love, at villa la Californie in Cannes. This is how Picasso greeted him when he arrived on february 8th 1956: from the bathtub with Jacqueline amorously scrubbing his back
here he is playing with his son Claude, whom he had with his former wife Françoise

I find this picture fantastic...Picasso does enjoy his fish ! and look at the dog standing by him...too cute
A lot had been said about Picasso's numerous lovers and tumultuous love life and conjugal infidelity but looking at the two photos below, all I see is the tender love of an aging man towards his younger wife
such a beautiful gesture of the hand....you can nearly feel the love....
In his book, Goodbye Picasso, Duncan wrote the following : "guests arriving at la Californie (those fortunate few of the day, or week, or even month when the gates opened to outsiders) were welcomed by Picasso, a host who was perhaps the best man on earth, certainly its most influential artist, who often garbed the visitor (and Jacqueline too) with gifts of his own creations...."

However, Picasso and Jacqueline will leave the big villa, La Californie, in Cannes for the château de Vauvenargues, in quest of more intimacy. I envy the happy few who will have the opportunity to go and visit !

(ps: to Mary's mom...thank you very much for your visit. I would love to go and visit your blog but i can't find the post on which you left your comment ! I've been checking on various old posts and just can't find it. Would you mind just leaving a comment with your link on this post so that I can click on it ? Thank you !)

all pics were taken by David Douglas at villa La Californie, between 1956 and 1960

first pic : Côté Sud - issue june-july 20o9

other pics from here


DolceDreams said…
What a great post! I am intrigued with Picasso and have read many books about him, but have not seen this one, I will have to get it...thanks for sharing!
Also merci my dear for entering my give-away...you are not late at all!
Have a wonderful day,
Simply Mel said…
Oh my goodness, these are exquisite photos of Picasso (a lighter and more intimate side of a complex genius!).

Great post!
Joyful said…
I love the way you tell a story. I think you speak French as a first language, non? But your mastery of English is superb and I find myself entering into your blog posts with gusto! The black and white photos of Picasso's life are marvellieux.
Italo said…
Ces photos, si formidables. I love them. Dancing Picasso is super, but in the bathroom...amazing. Great post Lala.
That's really lovely ' inside' story of Picasso. He's as human as us!
I'm so glad you posted this! Coté Sud is so hard to track down here. I often miss an issue or two.
Picasso reminds us all to live life with passion!
somepinkflowers said…
wonderful of you ♥
to inspire me so early
in my day
with loving photos of picasso ♥


on my way to work
at the library
where i will
research more books
on this fascinating man...

{{ is it just me
or do you find him sexy even to the end?
his joy of life,
his enjoyment is everyday actions,
his eyes lit up with happiness--->

a sexy man
in each of these photos }}
manon 21 said…
merci de ta visite.

je vais voir Picasso la semaine prochaine à AIX.

Celeste Maia said…
Lala, this is really a superb posting. I had not seen the photo of Picasso eating the fish, like he was playing a musical instrument. Fantastic story and photos. I have read several books and articles about Picassos's life, and for me he was such a self-centered man, and incapable of loving a woman. Yes, he had many lovers and wives, but did he really love them? He certainly did not make them happy. But the man and the artist are two different things. I love the artist Picasso, all his various phases, his brilliance, and genius.
Look at his form in the first photo. A Spaniard is born with perfect form for dance...the angle of the shoulder and elbow, the turnout of the leg.It is just natural. Astounds me every time.
I love a good magazine too.
Catherine xo
dutchbaby said…
I love Cote Sud too; it's always packed with so much inspiration - just like your posts :-)

Thank you for selecting these exceptional photos and for pointing out all the lovely details, especially the dog and the gesture of Picasso's hand.
RE said…
I met his wife in Madrid. She was a grand dame in her 70s? I think at that point she was married to Jonas Salk.

She came to promote a book or something, and the American Women's Club invited her to give a talk. I told my art teacher and he went off and sure enough, she graciously came to the university to speak to us.

She had spirit! What a life.
RE said…
ooh desolee!
I made an error. Francoise Gilot was not married to him although she had two children with him. She had marvelous stories of living with Picasso in her book.
vicki archer said…
I have not had a chance to visit this summer but am hoping to in September....Have a wonderful weekend Lala, xv.
ps I love those hair products you mentioned.
Christina said…
Sweetheart, this brought me to tears. I wish there was a way to order this magazine.
Love you, sweet Lala.
Scarlet just gave me a "Heads Up" about your post, because she had read my series of "FRANCE, 1969" Posts some time ago---(May and into June, 2009, I think) And I spoke about meeting Picasso and posted pictures I had taken of him, as well as some other photos taken by some Newspaper Photographer---AND, I talked about Dabid Douglas Duncan and his wife, whom I got to meet and spend an evening with at their homw in The South Of France....Lovely wonderful people....And of course it was thrilling to meet Picasso and Jacqueline.....!

This was such a dear post and I am so glad Scarlet brought it to my attention...!
Relyn said…
Oh, this post has me happily remembering all my own moments with Picasso. Just standing there, in front of his work, letting him whisper in my ear.

My favorite Picasso moment, though, was with Sloane. You know, there is an entire post in this story. I'll write it soon. I promise.
SE'LAH... said…
Lala, this is a great post! Such human nature captured.
Mélanie said…
Je dois avouer que malgré ma location : sud de la france , je ne suis pas une fan de coté sud peut être car le sud est juste derrière ma porte mais cet article a l'air très intéressant , je cours l'acheter ....
Je suis allée voir l'expo en nocturne , c'était fantastique et j'espère pouvoir visiter le Chateau mais c'est quasiment déjà tout vendu ...enfinsi j'y vais je ferais certainement un post. J'adore Picasso en train de manger le poisson
Vivian said…
Fascinant!! Picasso est un homme si intriguant.

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