Andrew Freck ’21 — While I was in Barcelona last semester, I had the opportunity to visit numerous museums which exhibited the works of some of history’s most renowned artists. Just one of these, for example, was the Picasso Museum in Barcelona which houses a variety of his works, including many from earlier in his career like ‘Science and Charity’ and ‘The First Communion’.
In Barcelona, I took classes which covered a range of varying disciplines, and one of which was focused on three world-famous 20thcentury Catalonian artists: Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, and Joan Miró. This being said, visiting the Picasso Museum in Barcelona allowed me to view works which we had studied in class and get a better grasp of the different techniques that went into Picasso’s work.
Along with this, throughout the semester, I also had the opportunity to travel to many different countries where I would also visit art museums thanks to the kindness of the Givens family. In October, I had the opportunity to travel to Málaga, the birthplace of Picasso, where we visited another museum dedicated entirely to his work. Here, I discovered and appreciated what has become one of my favorite pieces by Picasso, a series of 11 lithographs depicting bulls in different forms. The description in the museum explained that Picasso had created the most detailed version first and had oxymoronically progressed backward in not a ‘reduction of mass, but an expansion of gesture’. I also had the unbelievable opportunity to visit the Museé Picasso in Paris where I was able to see Picasso’s ‘Self-Portrait’ from his Blue Period. This piece also especially fascinated me because I find it interesting to see how artists portray themselves through their own work, and I was able to compare Picasso’s self-depiction with those of other famous portrait artists like Van Gogh.
I would like to thank the Givens family for their generosity, and for the way they give back to Wabash College which enables students to travel the world and appreciate art. Thanks to the Givens family, I was afforded many life-changing experiences, like visiting three museums in three different cities all of which were dedicated entirely to the work of Pablo Picasso, and had the opportunity to develop my understanding of European art.