Pablo Picasso was born in Malaga, Spain, in 1881, and studied art in Barcelona and Madrid. He moved to Paris in 1904 and rapidly became known as an artist with outstanding innovative powers. Between 1908 and 1914 he developed Cubism in close collaboration with Georges Braque. The value of this film is that it records the comprehensive exhibition of Picasso's sculptures at the Tate Gallery, London, works rarely seen together. It includes works from all periods and in a variety of materials and styles: figurative heads and figures in bronze; sheet metal, wire and tube constructions made with the Spanish sculptor Julio González; a series of massive modelled heads with exaggerated features, dating from the 1930s; the witty assemblages of found materials (the Bull's Head, the Baboon); ceramic sculptures of the late 1940s and 1950s; and the 'folded' works of the 1960s, in which sheet metal is used as paper.
The commentary, written by Sir Roland Penrose, and accompanied by photographs of Picasso at work, describes the various influences - African art, Cubism, Mediterranean fables - on the sculptor and offers some personal interpretations. The film, above all, is a celebration of Picasso's unique ability to transform ordinary materials, even household objects, into poetic statements.
Director/Writer: Roland Penrose Narrator: Jill Balcon Arts Council of Great Britain