Guernica by Pablo PicassoGuernica is an oil painting on canvas by the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. The painting was made in June 1937. It is now located in a museum called Reina Sofia in the Madrid, the capital of Spain.
From 1936 till 1939 a civil war took place in Spain. The war is often portrayed as a struggle between democracy and fascism (facism is a form of Nationalism). During this civil war, Guernica faced an areal bombing called the Bombing of Guernica. It was carried out on the command of the Spanish nationalist Francisco Franco. About 1650 people got killed during this catastrophe.
Despite the fact that this time was terrible for Spain and its people, it also led to some good. The bombing shocked and thereby inspired the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso, making him paint this amazing artwork.In the scene of the painting there are a lot of things going on, I’m going to go over them one by one. At an open end on the left side, there is a bull standing over a lady who is grieving over a child in her arms. This shows how much sorrow the bombing caused. The centre of the painting has been occupied by a horse which is having an enormous amount of pain as if it has just been pierced by a javelin – something that also happened during that time due to the war. Under the horse there’s a dead soldier, with his hand still carrying a shattered sword from which a flower grows.
To the upper right of the horse, it appears that a frightened female figure has floated in to the room through a window, witnessing the scene. You can see a shocked look on her face, emphasizing how terrible the event was. In her arm she’s holding a lit candle. The candle is positioned very close to the bulb as a symbol of hope. Beneath her, a woman is staggering towards the centre of the scene. She is looking up blankly into the light at the bulb. On the far right a woman with her arms raised is being trapped by a fire from above and below her. It is said that her right arm has the shape of an aeroplane symbolising the planes which dropped the bombs.
The fact that it has only black and white colours emphasizes the sadness of the story. Guernica is one of the world’s most valued and most influential paintings. This painting was a way for Picasso to protest against Spain’s civil war, and this is still relevant to us today. The reason why we can empatize us in this painting so well is because it also means something to us nowadays, since we still have wars and conflicts and the things shown on the painting are still happening today. The tortured and distorted human and animal figures have shocked a lot of people and have shown them how much of a disaster this war was.
This painting gives the world a clearer view of how things happened at that time and shows them how these things are still relevant to us today. This is why it still has such a big influence on the world.