press release

Picasso: Untitled
50 Years, 50 Works, 50 Artists
May 19, 2023–January 7, 2024

“Picasso almost never gave his works a title; his friends, agents and curators did it for him.” Bernard Ruiz-Picasso.
Picasso: Untitled is an exhibition at La Casa Encendida curated by Eva Franch i Gilabert that presents 50 works from Picasso´s late period (1963–1973) as seen through the eyes of 50 contemporary artists.

Renaming is an act of love. Renaming is also a political act. The exhibition Picasso:Untitled invites us to look—which is also to think—beyond the known titles and representational interpretations of Picasso’s work.

The 50 Picasso works contained in the exhibition and the accompanying eponymous catalog have been subjected to a process of subjugation. 50 international artists, each one in conversation with a work, have created a new title and description that transforms, interrogates and redefines it. Building potential histories, each artist offers us a radically contemporary perspective on the work produced during the last decade of Picasso's life between 1963 and 1973. In this invitation to play with Picasso, the project opens spaces to questions latent in the works and essential in our present gaze as race, class, gender, identity, anthropocentrism, or empowerment.

The new titles and descriptions, some produced through speculative processes and others through poetic or political interpretations, collectively create a composite portrait of our current perceptions of Picasso's legacy and influence. This project invites us to develop an active gaze, to question aspects of our perception of Picasso's work, and at the same time of ourselves, of our values, and our contemporaneity.

The guest artists featured in the exhibition include Adrián Villar Rojas, Agnieszka Kurant, Ahmet Öğüt, Albert Serra, Alejandro Cesarco, Antoni Muntadas, Asunción Molinos Gordo, Black Quantum Futurism, Cabello/Carceller, Camille Henrot, Christine Sun Kim, Christopher Kulendran Thomas, DIS, El Conde de Torrefiel, Emilie Baltz, Erwin Wurm, Esther Ferrer, Frida Orupabo, Holly Herndon, Isabel Coixet, Iván Argote, Janaina Tschäpe, Jill Magid, Joy Harjo, Johanna Hedva, Jumana Manna, Klára Hosnedlová, Leonor Serrano-Rivas, Lydia Ourahmane, Maria Hassabi, Mercedes Azpilicueta, Niño de Elche, Omsk Social Club, ORLAN, Pauline Curnier Jardin, Pedro Neves Marques, Pol Taburet, Revital Cohen & Tuur Van Balen, Roméo Mivekannin, Ryan Gander, Sara Ramo, Simon Denny, Simon Fujiwara, Sissel Tolaas, Tala Madani, Taryn Simon, The Otolith Group, Trevor Paglen, Tuan Andrew Nguyen and Tyra Tingleff.

This is a project by La Casa Encendida and Fundación Almine y Bernard Ruiz-Picasso (FABA), curated by Eva Franch i Gilabert as part of the fiftieth anniversary celebrations of Pablo Picasso’s death. It is organized with the support of the National Commission for the Commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the death of the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso.

Picasso: Untitled's public program
The public program of Picasso: Untitled invites different artists to work with the texts generated for the exhibition and translate them into other languages through music, performance or orality. A polyphony that overflows the exhibition hall and proposes a multidisciplinary reinterpretation view of the artist and his work through specific artistic commissions.

The program starts on May 20 with the concert -a possible exhibition soundtrack- by the artists Sofie Birch and Antonina Nowacka and some performances by Maria Hassabi, among other guests Performing Picasso Paintings. At the beginning of October, La Casa Encendida will host an academic seminar in collaboration with FABA on the last decade of Picasso’s work. A special programme for schools will run from September to December, and throughout the year the exhibition will be accompanied by a diverse complementary programme of public activities. The complete program of activities will be communicated on the website.

The exhibition is also complemented by a bilingual catalog that reproduces the 50 works present in the exhibition and the new titles assigned by the 50 contemporary artists, in addition to their texts and reflections on the work and its meaning from today's perspective. Besides, the catalogue contains reflections by Elvira Dyangani Ose, Juan José Lahuerta and Andrea Lissoni.

About Celebration Picasso 1973–2023
2023 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the death of Spanish artist Pablo Picasso and thus the year will represent a celebration of his work and his artistic legacy in France, Spain and internationally. The French and Spanish governments wished to mark this transnational event through a bi-national commission, bringing together the cultural and diplomatic administrations of both countries.

The “Picasso Celebration 1973–2023” revolves around some fifty exhibitions and events to be held at renowned cultural institutions in Europe and North America that, together, address a historiographical analysis of Picasso’s work. The commemoration, accompanied by official celebrations in France and Spain, will make it possible to take stock of the research and interpretations of the artist’s work, especially during an important international symposium in autumn 2023, which also coincides with the opening of the Center for Picasso Studies in Paris.
The Musée national Picasso-Paris and the Spanish National Commission for the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the death of Pablo Picasso are pleased to support this exceptional program, which in Spain counts with Telefónica as its partner company.

Picasso: Untitled is a project by La Casa Encendida and Fundación Almine y Bernard Ruiz-Picasso (FABA) curated by Eva Franch i Gilabert.

The exhibition has the support of the National Commission for the Commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the death of Pablo Picasso, and the collaboration of the Community of Madrid. The exhibition is part of the official program of the Picasso Celebration 1973-2023, with Telefónica as a collaborating company in Spain.