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Picasso's Kitchen

  • Art
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Recommended

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

Pablo Picasso was the first artist who grew up in Barcelona to gain international renown. Ferran Adrià, for now, is the latest. One is the author of works in a juicy, filling exhibition; the other invites you to dessert.

Picasso's culinary universe is infinite: Els 4 Gats is famous for having been a spot where he met up with other artists; Cubism and still lifes, with the decisive irruption of collage; and an avalanche of timely topics, done as if they were practice runs, such as sculptures made with kitchen utensils, food in the literature, eating in busy Paris, seafood, pottery – metaphor for cooking – outdoor dining as a celebration of life (and of Manet's 'Déjeuner sur l'herbe'), food-related engravings... Two tiny oil paintings from the Picasso family kitchen in Málaga open the exhibition, and it finishes with the artist's monumental kitchen as it was in 1948.

Since you know you're definitely going to the exhibition, here's a bit of advice, if you have the time to follow it: You know how you don't eat everything on the menu when you go to a restaurant? Well, you may just have to put your gluttonous tendencies aside here too. If you really want to see the masterpieces that have been sent over expressly from Paris or those from the archives of Picasso's relatives – especially the works from the Cubist period – do it, and savour them. You can go back another day and see the rest, as the show is on until the end of September. These 180 pieces will show you Picasso's favourite foods: a lot of fruit and veg, oysters, sea urchins, lobster, and the odd steak. But don't forget that still lifes traditionally have deeper meanings than just food: they speak to the finitude of pleasure. Which has nothing to do with the Ferran Adrià conceptual area. He may not know it, but he's more of a Duchamp disciple.


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