Forging the image of the creator

Picasso began to cultivate the variation of the self-portrait as an artist during his academic years and his youth, although the theme runs throughout his oeuvre. This process of self-objectification led him to experiment with all sorts of perspectives and postures, mirroring the old masters and emphasising his condition as an artist. The historical costume and the animalised double hybrid, two important categories in Picasso's self-representations, were often caricatured, as in Self-Portrait with Wig or ’Picasso par lui-même’, in which he portrays himself as an ape. His projection as an artist can be traced in several guises, either as a painter in the act of creating (before a canvas), or as a bohemian wearing outlandish clothes, accompanied by friends. In this promotional process he turned to the press, producing self-portraits for reviews published in Barcelona and for Arte Joven, a journal he co-edited.