In celebration of the centenary of the first exhibiting (at Salon D’Antin, Paris) of Picasso’s ground breaking work, Les Demoiselles D’Avignon (The Young Ladies of Avignon), 1907, Performance artist Anita Wernström filmed this short, recreation of the posing of the piece. Shot at the Slade School of Art’s Woburn Place Research Center, her film fully captures and develops the complex atmosphere of provocation, confrontation and raw life force present in Picasso’s early masterpiece, while also interjecting a suggestion of downbeat and highly feminine humour.
A favourite painting of (the precocious) Wernström’s, since it adorned her bedroom wall as an eight year old, the magnificent physicality, Primitivism and proto-Feminism of Les Demioselles D’Avignon has continued to inform her own practice as an artist.
Keiron Phelan

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