Or you can just call him Pablo Picasso. And today is the 125th anniversary of his birthday.
Everyone is talking about him, particularly his damaged dream painting. It is the conversation being overheard on the street, literally. At the drugstore two guys were talking about the now infamous incident of the casino mogul elbowing the priceless (well, not really, but pretty close [$139M until recently]) post cubist masterpiece. One man acted out how he thought it went down, elbowing a line of Halloween candy. Then the conversation steered towards degenerative eye conditions. But it still doesn’t make sense. How does gesturing towards something involve elbowing? Unless you are doing the Monty Python “wink wink, nudge nudge” skit.
RIGHT: The Dream, 1932
Whenever I see the painting, I think of what Marie Therese’s daughter Maia said about it on his A&E Biography. She hates Picasso, particularly for how he treated her mother and the other women in his life. The Dream is a painting of Marie Therese, and of the composition Maia says something to the effect of “there is a male organ on my mother’s head!”
Eph You, Nora Ephron
In her blog she gets a little more in to detail of how it happened, but mechanically, the account still doesn’t make sense:
- he was standing in front of the painting at this point, facing us. He raised his hand to show us something about the painting -- and at that moment, his elbow crashed backwards right through the canvas.
Earlier in the entry she describes the painting:
- Steve Wynn launched into a long story about the painting -- he told us that it was a painting of Picasso's mistress, Marie-Therese Walter, that it was extremely erotic, and that if you looked at it carefully (which I did, for the first time, although I'd seen it before at the Bellagio) you could see that the head of Marie-Therese was divided in two sections and that one of them was a penis. This was not a good moment for me vis a vis the painting. In fact, I would have to say that it made me pretty much think I wouldn't pay five dollars for it.
Well, I wouldn't pay a cent for any of her books let alone read one. How depressing, a rich twit gets to hang out with rich people at rich casinos and, gasp, doesn’t approve of a possible weewee in a Picasso. There is more talent in that prick than in her entire body of work. Sorry for the rant, but such prudish dismissiveness of her ilk pisses me off. Especially coming from the writer of the "I'll have what she's having" scene in When Harry Met Sally.
There is a nice little piece on him at History.com