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The Sacré-Coeur

Pablo Picasso Spanish

Not on view

The construction of Paris’s monumental Sacré-Coeur Basilica atop Montmartre lasted from 1875, when the first stone was laid, until 1914. Part of this time Picasso lived nearby, and he would have seen the gleaming white edifice on a regular basis. In this painting, sketchy lines identify the dome, while its two flanking structures remain less distinct. The treatment of the central elements, with their faceted planes that appear to tumble toward the viewer, bears the hallmarks of Cubism, the style that Picasso pioneered alongside Georges Braque in the early years of the twentieth century. The painting was still in the artist’s possession when it was included in his 1966 retrospective at the Grand Palais in Paris. Although it seems incomplete, scholars have long accepted it as a finished work of art.

The Sacré-Coeur, Pablo Picasso (Spanish, Malaga 1881–1973 Mougins, France), Oil on canvas

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