Picasso and the Minotaur: A chapter in modern mythmaking


A public lecture on Picasso's relationship to, and subversion of, classical art.

Start Date

29th Aug 2019 6:00pm

End Date

29th Aug 2019 7:30pm


Centenary Lecture Theatre, Sandy Bay Campus

RSVP / Contact Information

Enquiries: E. T. 6226 2299

Picasso pic 1The famed Spanish artist, Pablo Picasso, engaged strongly with Greek and Roman mythology and art. Professor Marconi discusses Picasso’s engagement over the years with Greek and Roman art, including his artistic training in Spain, his early years as a modernist artist in Paris, his “second classical period” of 1917–1925, and his graphic art of the 1930s, such as the Vollard Suite. Despite of the artist’s continuous and explicit references to Greek and Roman art in his paintings and graphic work, only a handful of such references can be found in his sculptures. The strident dissonance in material, form, and subject between Picasso’s sculpture and classical sculpture is often overlooked. In his sculpture, Picasso generally avoided any compromise with the classical tradition, constantly pursuing his modernist agenda. An inescapable conclusion is that it was precisely the artist’s closeness to ancient art that allowed him to drastically subvert tradition and transform sculpture, changing the course of this medium in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

About the Speaker

Professor Clemente Marconi is the James R. McCredie Professor in the History of Greek Art and Archaeology at the Institute of Fine Arts of New York University. Educated at the University of Rome La Sapienza and at the Scuola Normale Superiore in Pisa, his main research interests are ancient Greek and Roman art and archaeology, with a focus on Greek art and architecture of the Archaic and Classical periods. Since 2006, Professor Marconi has directed the Institute of Fine Art–NYU’s excavations on the acropolis of Selinunte in Sicily. Professor Marconi has published extensively on a very wide range of themes relating to Greek and Roman art and architecture.

Proudly sponsored by The University of Tasmania and The Tasmanian Friends of the Australian Archaeological Institute at Athens.