Sunday, January 20, 2013

Copying The Masters

Copying The Masters

Three Musicians
I've wanted to recreate Picasso's "Three Musicians" in actual size in a deep relief metal sculpture for quite some time now.  I've been encouraged to "do my own thing" by many friends, so I've aborted the project. This project would give me the chance to understand how Picasso assembled shapes making his cubist paintings and assembled sculptures. 

While reading an art history book this morning I came across a chapter describing how Picasso spent time copying the masters. 
Between August and September of 1957, Picasso delved into a thorough analysis of Las Meninas, one of the most celebrated Velazquez paintings. His interpretative analysis of Velazquez' Las Meninas yielded the 58 Picasso paintings that comprise the Picasso Las Meninas series. Picasso commented:

Las Meninas
If anyone were to try to copy Las Meninas in complete good faith, and for example, got to a certain point - and if I were the copier - I would say to myself, "If I just put this a little more to the right or left?". I would try to do it my own way, forgetting about Velazquez.  (

So in this manner I could do the same with Picasso's Three Musicians then; whenever I changed it to the way I wanted it then I would forget about Picasso and the sculpture would be mine,

If all I ever did was someone elses work then I would not be original, but in studying a master a great deal can be learned. Afterall, we as artists are all influenced by one or another artist. Like Solomon says, "There is nothing new under the sun"

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