La Coiffure

Pablo Picasso Spanish

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 828

Although today art historians associate a woman at her toilette with Edgar Degas's famous series of nude bathers, shown in Paris at the 1886 Impressionist exhibition and repeated in his oeuvre until about 1910, it is unlikely that Picasso could have seen many examples. Degas had drawn inspiration from the Neoclassical painter Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, and that same source was used by Pierre Puvis de Chavannes and Auguste Renoir in their development of the theme at the end of the nineteenth century. In an odd twist, however, Picasso chose to suppress in this picture all the eroticism that normally attends the subject. Instead, he turns the picture into a contrapuntal variation on the Holy Family, with echoes of Leonardo's Virgin and Saint Anne at the Musée du Louvre. Picasso painted this composition on a much-used canvas: there are at least three complete paintings beneath the present surface.

La Coiffure, Pablo Picasso (Spanish, Malaga 1881–1973 Mougins, France), Oil on canvas

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.