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10 Most Famous Paintings by Pablo Picasso

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In this article on Arthive, you will learn about 10 of the most famous paintings by the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. Read the reports and reviews of the authors of Arthive.
10 Most Famous Paintings by Pablo Picasso
Here mentioned are the top 10 of Picasso’s famous paintings:

The Old Guitarist, 1903-1904

Considered to be one of Pablo Picasso’s famous works, this painting was made at the time one of his close friends, Casagemas, committed suicide. This was the time in life when Picasso was more empathetic towards the downtrodden of the society and painted several canvases with the poor, ill and misfortune as his subjects.
His empathy came from personal experiences, as he, too, was penniless a couple of years before this painting. This Pablo Picasso artwork was made in Madrid, and the distorted nature of this painting is a recall from his past works like El Greco.
In this picture, you will find a sightless and bent man holding a humungous, round guitar. While the brown body represents the shift in color, the instrument covers the space around the figure, both physically and metaphorically.
The blindness and poverty-stricken man is very evident. At the time of the painting, several pieces of literature symbolized that blond characters had powers of inner vision, which is what Picasso is referring to here.
The Old Guitarist, 1903−1904
The Old Guitarist, 1903−1904

Ma Jolie, 1912

Known to be one of the most famous paintings by Picasso, the artist here is trying to suggest a musical association by locating a music staff and treble clef near the stenciled letters.
Literally translating to ‘My Prettiest Girl', this painting was a reference to the popular song performed at the Parisian music hall Picasso often went to. The name of this painting was essentially a nickname given to his lover at the time, Marcelle Humbert.
In this picture, you will see her figure constructed with Picasso’s signature shifting planes of Analytic Cubism
Avant-garde is how modern art critics refer the general trend of new artistic directions that arose in world art at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. A very thin line separates it from the concept of “modernism”. Read more
The art movement developed in the first quarter of the 20th century, mainly in Italy and Russia. Some ironically called it scandalous cubism. The founding fathers urged to stop adoring the art of the past, and to exalt the industrial spirit of the future: to draw airplanes, cars, metal bridges, steamers and other achievements of the progress. Read more
Cubism (fr. cubisme) is a recognizable art movement that originated at the beginning of the 20th century, and many of its techniques are still in demand. Its distinctive features are the direct use of geometric shapes, a narrow circle of subjects (portraits, still lifes or buildings), deformation, angularity, complete lack of realism. In Cubism, shape is more important than colour. Read more
. While you can find many clues of the representation of the artist’s beloved, it is far from any conventional portrait.
You will see a triangular form strung like a guitar in the lower bottom, while below it, you will see four fingers. Along with that, you will see the elbow on the right and a floating smile, which is hardly understandable on the top half of the canvas.
Ma Jolie, 1912
Ma Jolie, 1912

La Vie, 1903

Another one of Pablo Picasso’s famous art, this oil painting, is often said to be the pinnacle of Picasso’s blue period. Located in the permanent collection at the Cleveland Museum of Art, this painting was made in Barcelona in 1903.
This was Pablo Picasso’s famous artwork that depicted two pairs of people and a naked couple confronting a mother carrying her child in her arms.
You will also find two paintings within the painting. While the upper one shows a nude couple hugging, the lower one is of a lonesome nude
The nude is the genre focused on the aesthetic aspect of the naked human body. The term traces its origin to the Latin nudus (“naked, bare”) and is cognate with the French nudité (“nudity”). Read more
person. The other pair can be seen in the background of the room, which appears to be a studio. The latter is said to be inspired by Vincent Van Gogh’s Sorrow.
Even though Picasso repainted another motif of a birdman attacking a naked woman, only traces of it are visible to the naked eye.
La Vie, 1903
La Vie, 1903

Les Demoiselles D’Avignon, 1907

Of all Pablo Picasso’s drawings and paintings, this is one of the most enormous oil paintings. It essentially portrays five naked female prostitutes in a brothel near a street in Barcelona. This art is now a part of the Museum of Modern art.
Neither of the figures is conventionally feminine, and each is portrayed in a rather confrontational and disconcerting manner. The figures are represented with disjointed and angular body shapes.
However, the one on the left shows a dress of Egyptian origin and noticeable facial features. While the two on the right are drawn in an African mask style, the two on the left are of the Iberian style of Picasso.
Les Demoiselles D’Avignon, 1907
Les Demoiselles D’Avignon, 1907

Guernica, 1937

Much like the prior mentioned painting, this one too is a large oil painting and is considered to be one of Pablo Picasso’s famous paintings. Several critics and art enthusiasts regard this painting as a very powerful and moving anti-war image of history and Picasso’s best work.
The white, black and grey painting shows suffering created through chaos and violence. Although you have to be rather discerning to notice the contents of the painting, it shows a stabbed horse, a dead baby along with a screaming woman and a mutilated soldier and flames.
It was painted in Paris as a response to the 1937 bombing of Guernica. This is Picasso’s famous artwork which is still showcased in Madrid at Museo Reina Sofia.
Guernica, 1937
Guernica, 1937

Portrait of Dora Maar, 1937

Undoubtedly one of the most famous works of Picasso, this oil painting depicts Dora Maar, one of Picasso’s lovers.
This is rather one of Pablo Picasso’s easy paintings when it comes to its description. Here you will see the subject sitting in a chair. She is depicted with expensive clothing and jewelry and portrayed to be an elegant woman.
Nevertheless, there are several intricate details in the painting that you should not miss. For one, you will see her wearing a deco jacket with a flower motif and long red nails. The posture further indicates that she is relaxed and has one hand risen to her cheek. It is located in Musee Picasso, in Paris, where it is said to be one of Pablo Picasso’s best paintings.
Portrait of Dora Maar, 1937
Portrait of Dora Maar, 1937

Figures at the Seaside, 1931

During the summer of 1931, Picasso visited the French Riviera Resort and painted a series of beach scenes, one of which is this. This painting is said to be inspired by the painter’s liaison with a 19-year old model and his deteriorating terms with his then-wife, Olga.
This is one of Picasso’s famous paintings that aptly show Pablo Picasso’s painting style and how he implements intricate details in plain sight. This painting portrays two mantis-headed beings sitting together.
This painting was quite popular with the surrealists, mainly because of the animal’s habit of eating the male partner after intercourse and how it produced yet another visual metaphor.
Figures at the Seaside, 1931
Figures at the Seaside, 1931

The Soup, 1902

Considered to be Picasso’s most famous painting by many, this painting was made when he was suffering from poverty. Although he got immense success in the earlier year, he quickly ran out of funds and was again one with the poverty surrounding him. In this painting, Picasso reflects upon the experiences he had from visiting a women’s prison.
His inspiration for this painting was the murals painted by Pierre Puvis de Chavannes inside the Pantheon. Much like one of the drawings in the mural, this painting, too, showed a woman helping another from starving on the street. However, even in the original mural, Picasso was the one who sketched this scene.
The Soup, 1902
The Soup, 1902

Large Nude
The nude is the genre focused on the aesthetic aspect of the naked human body. The term traces its origin to the Latin nudus (“naked, bare”) and is cognate with the French nudité (“nudity”). Read more
in a Red Armchair, 1929

Housed in the Merill Collection, this painting is said to be influenced by surrealism and be a portrait of his first wife, Olga. Picasso had a total of 7 serious relationships throughout his lifetime, all of which inflicted some kind of trauma for him, along with this one.
Olga turned bitter towards the artist once they ended their relationship. You can clearly see the influence of such trauma in Pablo Picasso’s paintings. While earlier on, she was portrayed as an elegant and sentimental woman, from this point, his color pallet changed to a more saturated color, muted tones. That said, recently, in 2012, this painting was vandalized but quickly restored by authorities.
Large Nude in a Red Armchair, 1929
Large Nude
The nude is the genre focused on the aesthetic aspect of the naked human body. The term traces its origin to the Latin nudus (“naked, bare”) and is cognate with the French nudité (“nudity”). Read more
in a Red Armchair, 1929

The Weeping Woman, 1937

Easily Picasso’s most famous work, this one was created in France and depicted one of his mistresses, Dora Maar.
This painting came at the end of a series he dedicated to the Guernica Bombing. However, he was really intrigued with the subject of this painting and revisited it quite a number of times throughout that year.
This painting has good reason to be Pablo Picasso’s most famous painting as it was the most elaborate one of the series. You can visit it in London at Tate Modern.
The Weeping Woman, 1937
The Weeping Woman, 1937