Tête de femme, 1929-1930
Painted iron, sheet-iron, springs and colanders, 100 x 37 x 59 cm
Musée Picasso, Paris
© 2005, ProLitteris, Zurich
Many paintings and drawings from Picasso's surrealist phase show "sculpturally" conceived figures and configurations. Yet in addition to these "mental sculptures," there emerged a series of superb surrealist sculptures in the round. Here, two potential ways of building a human figure of separate elements came to light. In the one case, the figure was developed out of an interplay of biomorphic (organic) volumes, all of them from the artist's own hand. In the other, the "surrealistic" figure emerged from a combination of preexisting elements. The latter method is seen in the fascinating sculpture illustrated here, whose head consists, among other things, of two salad colanders. Whether modelled or built of found parts, the predominant factor in both cases is the concept of assemblage, based in Cubism, which was here expanded and applied to surrealist ends. Now the surrealist space had become a full-blown, three-dimensional reality.