Museum to Reopen after Five-Year Renovation Project
1 August 2014
Grand Reopening of Musée Picasso set for 25th October
The great artist Pablo Picasso once said "I am the greatest collector of Picasso's in the world". Funny as it may seem, he was completely right, as at the time of his death in 1973 he had collected over 5,000 of his own pieces. The Musée Picasso, opened in 1985, was the resulting solution for displaying this body of work. In 2009, it was decided that the museum needed a renovation to provide a better experience to visitors. Finally, after five long years, it will reopen its doors on the 25th October...
A Brief History of one of the Most Celebrated Artists of All Time
Looking back on the history of Picasso and the timeline of the work he produced, it's not hard to see why he is now regarded as one of the world's most important artists. Even someone with the most passing interest in art can appreciate the skill he displays in his work, along with the evolution of his styles, from the early 'blue period' at the turn of the 20th century, to the neo-expressionism of the artist's final years.
While he was always experimenting and evolving, Picasso is known for two particular styles, both of which he at least partly pioneered: cubism and surrealism. He first started to explore cubism in 1909 and created a number of now iconic paintings. Surrealism was a style which he approached throughout the second half of his life, and it was this particular style of painting that most of us will remember Picasso for.
Delays, Setbacks and a World-Class Museum
There are numerous Picasso museums across Europe, from Spain to Germany, but it is the Musée Picasso that has the largest and most diverse collection. The museum is housed in the former Hôtel Salé, a grand mansion built in the 1600s. While the building underwent extensive work to turn it into an art gallery, it has always lacked the space to display the entire collection.
This lack of space was one of the primary reasons for the recent renovations. Along with moving administrative functions into a nearby building (thus freeing up a lot of space to exhibit more art), extensive upgrades have been made to both the interior and exterior, all aimed at improving the visitor experience. The renovations have not been without incident, with the budget constantly increasing and the work taking five years to complete, instead of the originally-estimated two.
Despite these problems, the result is something quite magnificent. As well as housing a huge array of Picasso's work, the Musée Picasso also contains artefacts from his studio, other artists' work that he collected, and a number of pieces of African art, from which he took a great deal of inspiration. When the gallery reopens on the 25th October (also the 133rd anniversary of Picasso's birth), Paris will have regained one of its most loved galleries, which will add the finishing touch to any tour of the French capital's art galleries.
Explore Paris' Newest Attraction for Yourself
London, New York and Berlin are undoubtedly great cities to visit if you're a true art lover, but few people would argue that Paris shouldn't be the top of your list. The city itself is a work of art and contains countless art galleries, exploring all manner of styles and artists. The Musée Picasso is simply the latest addition to a long line of excellent offerings.
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