Pablo Picasso. Carton of Guernica, 1955


Guernica, Icon of Peace

04.11 05.12.2018

The Alberto Peruzzo Foundation presented from 4 November to 5 December 2018 the exhibition “Guernica. Icon of Peace”.

The Guernica carton is a masterpiece painted by Pablo Picasso and Jacqueline de la Baume Durrbach for use as the pattern of a tapestry commissioned by Nelson Rockefeller and permanently exhibited at the UN headquarters. The original cartoon was displayed at the Padua Museum of the Third Army. This happens at a time of highly symbolic value for Italy, the Centenary of the Signature of the Armistice of the Great War.

Serena Baccaglini, the exhibition curator, said: «Guernica is a special artwork; you can see it at a glance. It’s a monumental carton which measures 27 square meters and does not fit entirely into a single page of a book. All characters livening it up – six human beings and three animals – are bigger than life size, gathered in a closed space without colors. The way they are mixed together immediately suggests a world overwhelmed by anxiety. It was later found out that it is the autobiographical work of an exiled Spaniard, the ingenious Picasso, an icon for the whole world!

The carton replica I found after years of research and soon to be displayed in such a prestigious venue, the Museum of the Third Army, originates from the Guernica oil painting, kept at the Madrid Reina Sofia Museum, ideated and created in a period of only 33 days after the terrible bombing of the Basque village of Guernica in April 1937 and exhibited at the Paris Expo the same year.

The carton replica, instead, was drawn 18 years later in 1955, when Nelson Rockefeller encouraged Picasso to paint again the work that was drawing the world’s attention to itself for its strong emotional appeal and spoke out against the devastating effects of war, any war!»