Malaga - Picasso's City by Magdalena
Malaga, the capital of the Costa del Sol, is a city with constant visual reference to the life of, Pablo Picasso.
Pablo Picasso was still born in Malaga in 1881. Only after his uncle blew smoke in his tiny face did he struggle to breathe and survive. The midwife had actually left little Pablo to attend to his mother who was also close to dying after the birth, and apparently it was common practice to use smoke to open a new born baby’s lungs.
Pablo Picasso was born on the first floor of a tenement house with the number 36 in the Plaza de la Merced in Malaga. Today, you can still find the bedroom in which Dona Maria Picasso gave birth to her son. The place where Picasso came into the world has been preserved as part of the Fundación Natal Casa Pablo Ruiz Picasso. And this may be the best to start when getting to know the fascinating cultural and artistic genius of Malaga. The foundation was established in 1988 to promote the artist's character and work. On the first floor of the building you will find the museum, and the next floors are in-house rooms. The ground floor and additional spaces in the building next to the Plaza are filled with exhibitions dedicated to the painter.
The square in front of his birthplace is where he played his first games and took his first steps. Every day he passed through this square heading towards the Plaza de la Constitución, where he studied as a child. The square is filled with pigeons, which later appeared in his work. Today, there is a monument in the shape of a bench, on which a statue of Pablo Picasso sits. He is rendered at the end of his life as an old man. He holds a notebook and stylus in his hand, ready to draw what is happening in the square.
Picasso began his education in Malaga, and it was here that his artistic path began. He drew inspiration from the world around him. The Plaza de Toros (where he watched bullfights) certainly had a huge impact on him, and bulls continued to be a theme in the artist's work.
Near the Plaza de la Merced we find the church of Santiago. It is one of the oldest churches in Malaga, and the place where Pablo was baptised. To this day, you can view the record of the artist's baptism as Pablo Diego José Francisco of Paula Juan Nepomuceno María of the Remedios Crispiniano of the Santisima Trinidad Ruiz and Picasso.
Fans of Picasso’s work can not miss the Museo Pablo Picasso. In the Buenavista Palace, halfway between the Plaza de la Merced and the cathedral, we can admire the complete works of the most influential painter of the 20th century. Formerly a noble palace, the adjoining buildings constitute an exhibition space within which you can get to know Pablo Picasso from his own perspective. Established in 2003, the museum contains a private collection handed over by the artist's family. Oil paintings, drawings, graphics, sculptures and ceramic works from various stages of his life perfectly reflect his artistic trajectory.
Málaga was certainly one of the most stimulating environments in the life of Pablo Picasso, of which traces can be found in his later work. And although Picasso later lived in La Coruña, Barcelona, and France, he always dreamed about returning to his city.
Malaga today is ripe with references to Pablo Picasso. There are stalls and stores filled with reproductions of his work, and local contemporary artists as well draw inspiration from his work. You too should visit Malaga, and find out more, gain some inspiration for your own life from this amazing birthplace.