This painting was created in 1937 by Pablo Picasso. Here I will tell you 10 important facts about this painting.
1. Guernica is Picasso’s most important political painting. It has remained relevant as a work of art and as a symbol of protest, and it kept the memory of the Basque town’s nightmare alive. When the artist was living in Nazi-occupied Paris during World War II then one German officer asked him, upon seeing a photo of Guernica in his apartment, “Did you do that?” Picasso responded, “No, you did.”
2. It was a commissioned painting. Picasso was made aware of what had gone on in his country of origin after the bombing of Guernica. That time Picasso was working on a mural for the Paris Exhibition to be held in 1937, which was commissioned by the Spanish Republican government.
3. Picasso learned about the bombing in Guernica by reading an article published in the newspaper, the suggestion of torn newsprint appears in the painting.
4. His patriotism and sense of justice exceeded physical location. He had not been to Spain( birthplace of the artist) for several years when the Nazis bombed the Spanish town of Guernica in 1937. That time he was living in Paris and never returned to his birthplace to live. Yet the attack, which killed mainly women and children, shook the artist to the core.
5. In 1974, Tony Shafrazi(an antiwar activist and artist ) would deface the mural with red spray paint as a protest statement. That time it was on display at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. Curators immediately cleaned the painting, and Tony Shafrazi had to go to jail, charged with criminal mischief.
7. When He was creating “Guernica,” he allowed a photographer to chronicle its progress. According to some historians, the resulting black and white photos inspired the artist to revise the artist’s earlier colored versions of the artwork to a starker, more impactful palette.
8. The Artist used a lack of color to express the starkness of the aftermath of the bombing and also specially ordered house paint that had a minimum amount of gloss. The non-glossy finish, in addition to the shades of grey, white, and blue-black, set an outspoken yet unadorned tone for the artwork.
9. The mural holds some hidden images. A skull is one of them, which is superimposed over the horse’s body. Another hidden image is a bull formed from the horse’s bent leg.
10. Minotaur and the Harlequin were the artist’s signature images which figure in Guernica. The Minotaur symbolizes irrational power and dominates the left side of the work. The harlequin was a partially hidden component that was just off-center to the left, cries a diamond-shaped tear. The harlequin traditionally symbolizes duality in this painting.