Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 18811973)
Oil on canvas; 25 5/8 x 21 1/4 in. (65.1 x 54 cm)
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Leonard S. Field, 1990 (1990.192)
© 2011 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Portraits of his belovedsfriends, wives, mistresses, and childrenoccupied Picasso throughout his life. The dark-haired, dark-eyed features of Jacqueline Roque (19271986), his muse for the last nineteen years of his life, fill the entire space of this fairly small canvas. Boldly dividing both figure and background into large irregular, curvilinear shapes that fit together like puzzle pieces, he renders the details of her head with repetitive sweeping brushstrokes that suggest her long luxurious hair, and short spiky dashes to indicate full eyebrows and long lashes. As in many of his heads, Picasso here presents both full and profile views in a much more simplified and flattened version of his early Cubist attempts to present simultaneous viewpoints.