Pablo Picasso

La Femme qui pleure I [Weeping Woman I] (1937)

About this artwork

This is one of Picasso’s most iconic images. It was created as one of the main studies for a huge mural commissioned for the Spanish Pavilion of the 1937 International Exhibition in Paris. Picasso chose to focus on the horror of the bombing of the small Basque town of Guernica, bombed at General Franco’s request. Some 1700 people were killed or wounded. The study of a weeping woman, her mouth fixed in a silent scream of pain, is a motif to convey the plight of the Spanish people of the Basque region. Picasso experimented with the image of the weeping woman in several prints and, most famously, in a painting. This print was purchased directly from the artist by the English artist and collector Roland Penrose. It is inscribed ‘For Penrose.’

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  • title: La Femme qui pleure I [Weeping Woman I]
  • accession number: GMA 4774
  • artist: Pablo PicassoFrench (1881 - 1973)
  • gallery: On Loan
  • object type: Work on paper
  • subject: Wars and Conflicts Emotions
  • medium: Etching
  • date created: 1937
  • measurements: Plate: 69.20 x 49.50 cm; paper: 77.20 x 56.90 cm
  • credit line: Accepted by H.M. Government in lieu of Inheritance Tax on the Estate of Joanna Drew and allocated by H.M. Government to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art 2005
  • copyright: © Succession Picasso/DACS, London 2016.
  • photographer: Antonia Reeve

Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso

The son of an artist, Picasso was born in Malaga, Spain, and studied at art school in Barcelona. He visited Paris in 1900 and after several extended stays settled there in 1904. Picasso was a hugely prolific and highly influential artist who worked in numerous styles throughout his life. However, it is probably for his cubist paintings that he is known. Their revolutionary treatment of subject matter, whether still life or portrait, is instantly recognisable as being by Picasso. The Gallery of Modern Art has a small, but choice collection of Picasso's work, including a 'Blue Period' painting, a cubist collage, two still life paintings, two drawings, several prints and some notable loans.