Picasso Museum of Barcelona

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Lola Ruiz Picasso

From 12th November 2021 to 27th February 2022

Pablo Picasso. ‘Lola, hermana del artista’. Barcelona, noviembre de 1899-febrero de 1900. Carboncillo y lápices azul y rojo. Sobre papel verjurado. 45 x 29,5 cm. Museu Picasso, Barcelona.. Adquisición Plandiura, 1932
MPB 4.265. Museu Picasso, Barcelona.Fotografía: Gasull Fotografia © Sucesión Picasso, VEGAP, Madrid 2021

The exhibition dedicated to Lola is a tribute to Lola Ruiz Picasso and her zeal in preserving the work of her brother, while at the same time demonstrating the love they shared throughout their lives. Malén Gual, conservator of the Museu Picasso, is the curator of the proposal.

Picasso was always very close to his sister Dolores (Lola) Ruiz Picasso, especially after the death of little Conchita (1887-1895). Lola was one of the favourite models of the young and adolescent Picasso, his first portraits in A Coruña dating back to the year 1894, and remaining in the iconography of the artist until 1900, except for the periods in which the artist moved away from his family to study in Madrid or to spend convalescence in Malaga. When the Blue Period began in 1901, Lola lost her place among the artist's symbolist iconography.

On settling down in Paris in 1904, Picasso kept up ties with his family, who always remained in Barcelona, and visited them on his successive trips to the city in 1906, 1909, 1910, 1913, 1917, 1926, 1933 and 1934. From a distance they maintained an epistolary relationship.

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    On 18th August, 1909, Lola married Juan Bautista Vilató (Barcelona, 1885-1947). Picasso did not attend the marriage, even though at the time he was in Horta de Sant Joan with Fernande. The Vilató-Ruiz couple always lived in Barcelona, except for a period when they settled in Maó, between 1910 and 1913. When Picasso's father died in 1913, his mother, María Picasso, went to live with the Vilató family until her death in 1938.

    The couple had seven children: Juan (1910-1992) Josefín - Fin - (1916- 1968); Pablo (1918-1987); Dolores (1818-1993), Mercedes (1920- 1920), Javier (1921-2000), and Jaime (1923-2019).

    The works left by Picasso in Barcelona — the works from childhood and youth carried out before 1904, the date in which he settled in Paris, and the paintings done during his stay in 1917, were kept by his family, first at the home in the street of Carrer de la Mercè, from 1927 at number 7 of Passeig de Colom and, finally, from 1934 onwards, at number 48 of Passeig de Gràcia. María Picasso, Lola and the Vilató brothers kept and guarded the artist’s work until, after the donation in 1970, the collection moved to the Museu Picasso, in Carrer Montcada.

    The exhibition, which will be presented in the autumn of 2021 in the temporary exhibition rooms of the Museu Picasso, is structured in four sections. The first is dedicated to the portraits that Picasso did of his sister and includes works from the Museum's collection and the family's collections. A second section shows photographs of Lola from all stages of her life. A section is devoted to the works that Lola herself painted and which are conserved in the collection of the Museu Picasso as part of the artist’s 1970 donation. Finally, the correspondence that Picasso sent to his sister will be exhibited.

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