Pablo Picasso, ‘Homme Terrassant un Dragon’, 1956, Willow Gallery
Pablo Picasso, ‘Homme Terrassant un Dragon’, 1956, Willow Gallery

When Picasso made this drawing, a film about him (The Mystery of Picasso) had just won an award at the Cannes Film Festival. The film shows Picasso drawing on specially-designed translucent screens, giving the audience an unrivalled insight into how he was able to create pared-down but evocative images such as this one that pulse with freedom, experimentation, and energy.

Signature: Signed Picasso, inscribed Cannes and dated le 13.5.56

Private Collection, Paris (a gift from the artist in 1956)
Sale: Christie's, Paris, May 21, 2008, lot 10

This work is sold with a photo-certificate of authenticity from Claude Picasso.

About Pablo Picasso

A prolific and tireless innovator of art forms, Pablo Picasso impacted the course of 20th-century art with unparalleled magnitude. Inspired by African and Iberian art and developments in the world around him, Picasso contributed significantly to a number of artistic movements, notably Cubism, Surrealism, Neoclassicism, and Expressionism. Along with Georges Braque, Picasso is best known for pioneering Cubism in an attempt to reconcile three-dimensional space with the two-dimensional picture plane, once asking, “Are we to paint what’s on the face, what’s inside the face, or what’s behind it?” Responding to the Spanish Civil War, he painted his most famous work, Guernica (1937), whose violent images of anguished figures rendered in grisaille made it a definitive work of anti-war art. “Painting is not made to decorate apartments,” he said. “It’s an offensive and defensive weapon against the enemy.” Picasso’s sizable oeuvre includes over 20,000 paintings, prints, drawings, sculptures, ceramics, theater sets, and costume designs.

Spanish, 1881-1973, Malaga, Spain, based in Paris and Mougins, France