Pablo Picasso - Editions & Works on Paper New York Tuesday, October 19, 2021 | Phillips
  • Literature

    Patrick Cramer books 108
    Brigitte Baer 1077-1080

  • Catalogue Essay

    Pindar's Eighth Pythian Ode was, after Ovid's Metamorphoses (illustrated by Picasso in 1931) and Aristophanes's Lysistrata (1934), the third and last text from classical antiquity which Picasso illustrated. At the request of P.A. Benoit, Picasso executed four drypoints on celluloid for Pindar's text. He cut three pieces out of one of the plates and engraved two figures and a face on them. Picasso's engravings illustrate three aspects of the athletic contest, a wrestling competition at the Pythian Games in Delphi: a young athlete about to begin the match; the triumphant athlete radiating beauty and strength, and, finally the defeated athlete of Pindar's Ode, a short, stocky man with folded arms and dark face. The drypoint mounted on the front cover might be an imaginary portrait of the poet. (Patrick Cramer Pablo Picasso The Illustrated Books, 1983, p. 270)

  • Artist Biography

    Pablo Picasso

    Spanish • 1881 - 1973

    One of the most dominant and influential artists of the 20th century, Pablo Picasso was a master of endless reinvention. While significantly contributing to the movements of Surrealism, Neoclassicism and Expressionism, he is best known for pioneering the groundbreaking movement of Cubism alongside fellow artist Georges Braque in the 1910s. In his practice, he drew on African and Iberian visual culture as well as the developments in the fast-changing world around him.

    Throughout his long and prolific career, the Spanish-born artist consistently pushed the boundaries of art to new extremes. Picasso's oeuvre is famously characterized by a radical diversity of styles, ranging from his early forays in Cubism to his Classical Period and his later more gestural expressionist work, and a diverse array of media including printmaking, drawing, ceramics and sculpture as well as theater sets and costumes designs. 

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VIIIe Pythique (Eighth Pythian Ode), by Pindare (Bl. 995-98, Ba. 1077-80, C. bks 108)

The complete set of four drypoints printed from celluloid, loose and folded (as issued), with title page and text in Greek and French, all contained in the original light gray linen-covered portfolio.
all I. various sizes
all S. folded 19 7/8 x 13 in. (50.5 x 33 cm)

Signed and numbered '23/44 PAB' in pencil (there were also 6 proof copies), published by Pierre André Benoit (PAB), Paris.

$6,000 - 9,000 

Sold for $13,860

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Editions & Works on Paper

New York Auction 19-21 October 2021