(in chronological order)
Self-portrait as an Ecce Homo, c.1500
Leonardo da Vinci:
Rembrandt van Rijn:
Vincent van Gogh:
Self-portrait with bandaged ear, 1889
Self-portrait with glass of champagne, 1919
The broken column (Self-portrait), 1944
oil on canvas, 81-60 cm., Paris, Musée Picasso
© Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn
Picasso arrived in Paris just before turning 20, and his beginnings in the French capital were not easy. Alone and with economic difficulties, the young genius wandered by the huge metropolis immersed in the Bohemian atmosphere of the city. Prostitutes, alcoholics, tramps… Picasso began to depict the world in which he was living, creating a melancholic universe of blue tones filled with phantasmagoric and pale figures. It was the beginning of his so-called “Blue Period”.
This self-portrait is not the first that Picasso painted, but it is one of first works of the Blue Period. The work was painted shortly after the suicide of his friend Carlos Casagemas, committed when Picasso was still a stranger in the immense Paris . The calm and serenity of the portrayed, the austerity of the work, and the bohemian look of the moustached figure, impart the image of a brave and decided artist who could easily find his way in spite of all difficulties he could find in it.