Among the 300 paintings, drawings, and historical documents on view at the Center Pompidou in Paris through February 25 for the exhibition Cubism are, left, Pablo Picasso, “Self-Portrait,” 1907. Oil on canvas, 56 x 46 cm. Narodni Galerie, Prague. Copyright the National Gallery, Prague, 2018. Copyright Succession Picasso 2018. And, right, Pablo Picasso, “Portrait of Max Jacob,” 1907. Gouache on paper, 62.5 x 47.5 cm. Museum Ludwig, Cologne. Copyright Rheinisches Bildarchiv Koln, Irouschek, Sonja, rba_c010921. Copyright Succession Picasso 2018. That the surrealist poet’s portrait hangs in a German museum is ironic; in February 1944, after none of his artist friends, including Picasso and Cocteau, were able to successfully intervene on his behalf (Cocteau tried, but didn’t talk to the right person; Sasha Guitry promised but did not come through), Jacob was arrested by the Gestapo after being ratted out by neighbors, dying of pneumonia in the Drancy way-camp before he could be deported. On his deathbed, Jacob — who had converted more than three decades earlier and regularly wrote proselytory poems for his friends — asked for a priest. “De vagues réverbères jettent sur la neige la lumière de ma mort.” (From “The Dice Cup.” To read Max Jacob’s poem on Fake News, click here.)
By Paul Ben-Itzak
Copyright 2004, 2018 Paul Ben-Itzak
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Among the 300 paintings, drawings, sculptures, and documents on view through February 25 in Paris for the Centre Pompidou’s encyclopedic exhibition Cubism is, above, Pablo Picasso, “Instruments de musique sur un guéridon,” 1914. Oil and sand on canvas, 128.5 x 88 cm. Former collection of Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé, Fondation Pierre Bergé-Yves Saint Laurent, Paris. © Christie’s Images, Ltd.; © Succession Picasso 2018. Courtesy Service Presse Centre Pompidou. To support the Dance Insider & Arts Voyager’s winter coverage of the full panorama of the Paris art, dance, and theater season, please make a donation today by designating your payment through PayPal to email@example.com, or contact us at that address to learn how to donate by check. No amount is too small; $36 gets you a one-year subscription, with full access to our archives of more than 2,000 articles by 150 critics on art and performances around the world since 1998.