Pablo Picasso. Goat Skull and Bottle. Vallauris, 1951 (cast 1954)

Pablo Picasso Goat Skull and Bottle Vallauris, 1951 (cast 1954)

  • Not on view

Goat Skull and Bottle is painted in shades of gray that match the somber palette of some of Picasso’s paintings in the years during and just after World War II and perhaps allude to the black-and-white photography that brought images of the war home. The candle depicted here serves as a memento mori, a reminder of mortality. The sculpture was created from a host of found materials unified by their casting in bronze. Picasso used the handlebars of a bicycle to represent the goat’s horns, and the heads of large bolts form its eyes. The goat's head is covered in a layer of corrugated cardboard that implies the direction of its hair. Nails are used for the tufts between its ears and for the rays of light emanating from the candle nestled in the bottle. In this and other of Picasso’s sculptures, found elements never fully give up their original identities even as they serve as parts of a sculptural whole.

Gallery label from Focus: Picasso Sculpture, July 3–November 3, 2008.
Additional text

Goat Skull and Bottle is painted in shades of gray that match the somber palette of some of Picasso's paintings in the years during and just after World War II and perhaps allude to the black-and-white photography that brought images of the war home. The candle depicted here serves as a memento mori, a reminder of mortality. The sculpture was created from a host of found materials unified by their castingin bronze. Picasso used the handlebars of a bicycle to represent the goat's horns, and the heads of large bolts form its eyes. The goat's head is covered in a layer of corrugated cardboard that implies the directionof its hair. Nails are used for the tufts between itsears and for the rays of light emanating from the candle nestled in the bottle. In this and other of Picasso's sculptures, found elements never fully give up their original identities even as they serve as parts of a sculptural whole.

Gallery label from 2015.
Medium
Painted bronze
Dimensions
31 x 37 5/8 x 21 1/2" (78.8 x 95.3 x 54.5 cm)
Credit
Mrs. Simon Guggenheim Fund
Object number
272.1956
Copyright
© 2021 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Department
Painting and Sculpture

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