Málaga 1881 - 1973 Mougins
Françoise aux cheveux ondulés
Lithograph on wove paper with watermark "Arches". 62 x 48.9 cm (65.1 x 49.6 cm). Signed and numbered. Proof 11/50. - Slightly browned.
Mourlot 47; Bloch 403
In 1946 Picasso created the famous series of likenesses of Françoise Gilot - his partner from 1943 to 1953, the mother of his children Claude and Paloma, and a painter herself. These portraits (Mourlot 38-47; Bloch 396-403) were created from memory on a single day, 14 June, and strikingly demonstrate the intensity with which the artist explored the motif he had formulated.
Within the briefest amount of time, he created ten sheets that are extremely diverse in terms of artistic expression. They attest to Picasso's creative versatility, but can also be interpreted as representations of different facets of their subject's character. Her facial features - with her large almond-shaped eyes, slender nose and beautifully curving lips - are depicted frontally and form the basic framework of all the likenesses. Picasso always also utilises the right eyebrow raised to form an angular arc as well as a small beauty mark on her chin as little artistic points of reference. The varied treatment of the hair and the slightly different forms of the eyes and mouth provide the basis of the astounding diversity with which Françoise Gilot and her personality appear before us in this series.