Artist: Pablo Picasso (Spanish, Malaga 1881–1973 Mougins, France)
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 51 1/8 x 38 1/8 in. (129.9 x 96.8 cm)
Credit Line: Bequest of Florene M. Schoenborn, 1995
Accession Number: 1996.403.4
Rights and Reproduction: © 2017 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
A cocreator, with Georges Braque, of Cubism, Picasso responded to many different artistic stimuli throughout in his career. Nude Standing by the Sea testifies to his contribution to Surrealism, a movement that aspired to tap into and visualize psychological states of being, often through the distortion of the human body. Here, Picasso rearranged anatomical parts and altered the proportions of a standing nude, thereby creating an ambiguous sculptural mass. This rather threatening bather perhaps reflects Picasso’s inner turmoil over the dissolution of his marriage to Olga Kokhlova and his affair with Marie-Thérèse Walter.