Picasso and the War

During the German occupation of France, Picasso decided to remain in Paris. Despite being threatened by the Gestapo and having limited resources, he chose to stay and work in the city, where the scarcity of material made the mere fact of producing artworks, especially in bronze, a subversive act in its own right. During this time, he gathered his earlier sculptures in his studio at Rue des Grands-Augustins in Paris, and made some of the most outstanding works of his career, which can be seen in this space. In 1941, he created Head of a Woman, a monumental bust of Dora Maar with clear references to Antiquity. Two years later, he produced Skull (Death’s Head), also on display in this gallery, which depicts a decaying head—an image often used by Picasso in the works he produced during wartime.