Picasso created the painting at the demand of Frederick Gerard, the owner of the cabaret «The Rabbit of Prowess,» who bought the cabaret for a tidy sum with Aristide Bryan only to discover his talents as a guitarist and singer.
Fredé is portrayed sitting against the wall and playing the guitar on the painting’s left side. Picasso was just 24 years old at the time, and his paintings were not selling well, so he could have offered up this job for food. Patrons were frequently depicted as large figures in the foreground by artists.
Here, Picasso broke with this tradition, and the main character of the painting was himself dressed in a Harlequin costume with a glass in his hand. Next to him, he portrayed Germain (Laura Gargallo) as a femme fatale. A close friend of Picasso Carlos Casaguemas was once in love with her, but Germain did not reciprocate, and in early 1901 Casaguemas shot himself in front of his friends and Germain. Memories of his suicide haunted Picasso. He had an affair with Germain after Cashagemas‘ death, which shocked his friends.
The painting was painted quickly, passionately. In the beginning, the artist drew a blue paint outline of the figures and drew a brown background, and then wrote the figures themselves. He left unopened sections of the canvas to highlight Germain’s paleness and her semi–secular position as a lady.
Name: At the Lapin Agile
Artist: Pablo Picasso
Type: Canvas Print
Condition: Stretched (Ready to hang) or Rolled
Fresh Color Forever
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