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Picasso Meets Arkansas
Incredible and incredibly moving Picasso show at the Arkansas Arts Center, in Little Rock, believe it or not. Here's one of the paintings:


The Artist And His Model, 1963
(note the fantastic long-snooted dog)

Two quotes, both from Picasso. Loved this one:

"It took me sixty years to learn to draw like a child again."

And I'm not sure what this one means (in terms of "the absolute"). He's talking about his wife, Françoise:

"She is the only woman I have ever known who is open to the absolute."

Posted by aalkon at June 17, 2006 11:18 AM

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'And I'm not sure what this one means (in terms of "the absolute"). He's talking about his wife, Françoise: "She is the only woman I have ever known who is open to the absolute."'

Translation: "She's the only woman who's completely cool with me fucking every other woman in sight."

Posted by: Lena at June 17, 2006 9:06 AM

Why the shock -- "in Little Rock, believe it or not"? It's not like the midwest doesn't have other high-flauten art and stuff.

Posted by: Oligonicella at June 17, 2006 9:19 AM

I'm from the midwest - from Detroit, so I'm not exactly high-falutin' (or "flauten," either). Arkansas is actually the south. Little Rock is a tiny city compared to other urban centers (about 180,000 people), and off the beaten path, and this is one of the best Picasso exhibitions I've ever seen.

Detroit's population, on the other hand, is nearly 10 million. San Jose, California, has 950,000.

Not a snob. Demographically aware.

Posted by: Amy Alkon at June 17, 2006 9:46 AM

Anthony Hopkins was great as Picasso in the film. My favorite line, (this sounds prudish but it worked), was when a young female student seduced him by disrobing, and he made a comment on indiscriminate sex as "you may as well stay at home and eat a ham sandwich". Ole Pablo was in the center of so much disruption in our world so often, even collaterally.

Also, in Barcelona, the Picasso Museum has a small wooden statue, about the size of a big shoe box, of a reclining nude woman that is actually a jewelry box/chest of drawers. It is brilliant.

Posted by: Eric at June 17, 2006 8:07 PM

Colloquial (like my spelling of a SoMo drawl). I live forty miles north of Arkansas; the two states (S.Mo & N.Ar) consider themselves more The Ozarks than midwest or south. Families spread well over the state lines, which are kinda fuzzy when you drive back and forth across them all the time. My wife's parents live in LR.

Thank you for the elucidation, I was unaware those cities were significantly larger than Little Rock, Arkadelphia or even Mountain Home.

My point is that traveling exhibits frequently tour the "small towns" in the U.S., mid or not. I wasn't calling you a snob, I was amused at the surprise.

Posted by: Oligonicella at June 18, 2006 9:06 AM

10 million in Detroit, Amy? You're off by an order of magnitude for Detroit proper (900K) and more than double the population of the metro area (4.5 mil). San Jose has over a million and a half in the city proper. You got Little Rock's population right, though it's metro area is over 600K. Where'd you get your numbers from Amy, they don't strike me as "demographically aware"?

FYI, Michigan as a whole has about 9.9 million people.*

* All numbers based on 2000 census.

Posted by: Mo at June 19, 2006 4:19 AM

Thanks. I meant to round off 950,000 to 1 million, not 9 million to 10 million.

Posted by: Amy Alkon at June 19, 2006 6:47 AM

It happens Amy. I was thrown off since only LA and NY metro areas have at least 10 million people, so the number struck me as remarkably absurd. Do you think the Picasso exhibit has something to do with the wealthy Walmart execs in Bentonville?

Posted by: Mo at June 19, 2006 7:55 AM

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