Song of the Dead by Pablo Picasso
In 1946 at the invitation of Fernand Mourlot, Picasso spent an intense period of several months learning and ultimately re-inventing lithography. Unlike many artists of his generation familiar with printmaking, Picasso was never formally taught and relied heavily on his printers to navigate many of the technical problems that needed solving to produce what he wanted. Mourlot made the observation that "During this period Picasso exhausted the possibilities of the process". The lithographs he made at Mourlot were quickly disseminated and seen throughout Europe and the United States, where many artists for the first time saw the infinite creative possibilities and innovations possible with lithography.
With meticulous detail, Fernand Mourlot documented all the graphic works he printed for Picasso and created with Andre Sauret what is the arguably the most comprehensive publication of Picasso's graphic works printed at the Mourlot titled, Picasso Lithographie, with high quality color lithographs spanning the most critical, influential and historically important period of his lithography with Mourlot (1947-1963).
These innovative and very popular lithographs by Picasso (keenly collected to this day) were created for the deluxe book of Poems by Pierre Reverdy using distinctive broad strokes. Living with Francoise Gilot at the time, at her suggestion he was inspired by medieval calligraphy to produce these impressive and unique characters.
Technical Details: Two Color Lithograph. Sheet size 12.5 x 9.5 inches. Picasso Lithographie Volume II, Andre Sauret, Monte Carlo,1948. #117