Last week I have already opened it in Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory. But as for today’s post I was inspired not by the classical Piazzolla kind of music, but by Jay- Z!))) His ‘Picasso, baby!’ this morning made me think of a beautiful weekend I spent in Cap d’Antibes and, of course, of Pablo Picasso.
Cap d’Antibes is quite an uninteresting destination for people “hungry for art”. But you definitely should not forget Chateau Musée Grimaldi in your “must-visit” list. The perfect location of the museum on the waterfront of Antibes, the idea of modern art on display in a castle, that has been in existence since the Romans sailed the Mediterranean nearly two thousand years ago, whatever it may be, the museum has an allure and splendor that no other museum I have visited has been able to muster – rivaling (and in my opinion – beating) even the Musée Picasso of Paris.
One thing that makes this museum totally amazing is that Picasso himself worked inside its very walls, shortly after the fall of WWII. The castle had been converted into a museum (known as the Chateau Grimaldi) during the late 1920′s exhibiting wonderful collections on early modernism, including works of Paul Signac. It was a natural fit for Picasso who, upon invitation, adapted a portion of the museum (the large gallery on the second floor) into a studio. Picasso indeed decorated the museum; there is a beautiful mural forever painted into the wall of his studio and he completed over 100 works of art using a variety of media, including ceramics, during his time in Antibes.
I love Picasso’s “Joie de Vivre”. In many books available at the museum boutique, you can see examples of his studies up until he finally arrived at this wonderful piece of art. The positions of each character, the direction of their heads turned, the twists of their bodies, their movement with a sense of elegance and freedom were each heavily considered and debated by the artist. This painting is the epitome of Picasso’s time spent in Antibes – healing as with the rest of Europe after the destruction and damage caused by WWII until finally creating happiness within, no doubt with the help of his lover, Françoise Gilot.
I can go on and on describing the collection or the beautiful old quartier of Antibes with narrow streets which lead to thick stone walls of the Museum. But better to see once, than to hear hundred times. I will only say, that if you are not a big fan of Picasso, you’ll be able to enjoy vibrant, richly colored paintings of Nicholas de Stael, who lived, and died, in Antibes and a wonderful temporary collection on the first floor with many captivating works of art from less-known but amazing artists. I especially enjoyed the one above titled Mur d’Or (Gold Wall) by Anna-Eva Bergman. I loved the patchy rhythm of the metallic gold separated by the blue-gray line before breaking into the sea of smooth white. The painting would have been nothing but boring if it weren’t for the simplest addition of that melancholic blue line both lifting and weighing down the painting all at once – I could have stared at it forever…, as at the sunset from the balcony of the Chateau.
Tags: Anna-Eva Bergman, Chateau Musée Grimaldi, Jay-Z, Pablo Picasso