LAS SEÑORITAS DE AVIGNON

“Ustedes esperan que yo les diga qué es Arte, si lo supiera, no se lo diría a nadie”

Pablo Picasso

 

Las Señoritas de Avignon es una obra considerada clave en el desarrollo de los movimientos modernistas del siglo XX, una de las obras más perturbadoras de la historia del arte, aún hoy después de 112 años de su creación su contemporaneidad continúa vigente y obligando al espectador a escudriñar, a descubrir y a tratar de entender su discurso vanguardista.

 

Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz Picasso más conocido como Pablo Picasso y nacido en Málaga el 25 de octubre de 1881, es el autor de esta pintura que rompió con los cánones tradicionales que se venían usando desde el Renacimiento. El título de la obra con que finalmente se la terminó conociendo hacía referencia a la calle Avinyó en la ciudad de Barcelona donde se ubicaban los burdeles que el pintor y sus amigos solían visitar en los años en que vivía en la ciudad condal, si bien Picasso lo llamaba el Burdel Filosófico se le atribuye al poeta y crítico André Salmon el título Les Demoiselles d´Avinyó pues le recordaba a un prostíbulo en dicha calle, aunque con el tiempo el nombre se terminó confundiendo con el de la ciudad francesa de Avignon.

Esta obra que inició el pintor malagueño en 1906 y la concluyó en el verano de 1907 marca el inicio de una etapa de ruptura con el pasado y la tradición pictórica, para entonces Picasso había transitado por diferentes etapas y se encontraba en una situación en la que pensaba que ya todo estaba hecho en la pintura, los maestros del pasado habían llevado al arte a límites difíciles de ser superados, así que la única opción que le quedaba era romper con esa tradición y revolucionar el arte, para qué seguir representando la realidad tal y cómo la veía si ya se lo había hecho hasta el cansancio? Esa misma realidad había que verla desde otra u otras visiones y puntos de vista, siendo de carácter obstinado e irreverente no dudó en comenzar a trabajar en algo que no sabía con certeza a donde lo llevaría pero que con seguridad no pasaría inadvertido.

Así comenzó a esbozar su idea, como era su costumbre, en cientos de dibujos y bocetos en hojas sueltas y en cuadernos (en la actualidad se conservan dieciséis cuadernos preparatorios para Les Demoiselles). Pero para entender el contexto en que surge esta idea en el artista español se debe acotar que por esos años Picasso ya residía de forma permanente en París, la ciudad de las luces, en donde se generaban las ideas modernistas en artes, tecnología, medicina, filosofía, moda, etc, y fue por entonces que en el museo del Trocadero había una exposición de máscaras africanas que Pablo Picasso visitó y de la que quedó impresionado pues le mostró un mundo desconocido para él, el llamado arte primitivo le había abierto la puerta hacia la libertad creativa, lejos de las ataduras del academicismo.

Pero también el entonces joven pintor, ya había bebido de dos grandes del arte como son El Greco y Paul Cezánne cuyas obras Picasso conocía muy bien. Se suele citar a la obra de El Greco Visión del Apocalipsis (Museo Metropolitano de Arte, N.Y.) (foto) que el pintor había visto en el estudio de su amigo Ignacio Zuloaga en tiempos en que éste era su propietario y de Cezánne su serie de bañistas, (foto) así como al arte africano y la escultura íbera como influencias decisivas en el nuevo rumbo que tomaría la obra de Picasso. Según el británico John Richardson crítico e historiador del arte, entre Les Demoiselles que fue el primer atisbo de lo que después se conocería como Cubismo y la obra de El Greco existe un paralelismo morfológico y cita una relación artística, un triángulo Picasso-Cezánne-El Greco.

El joven Picasso se metió de lleno en su nuevo proyecto cansado ya de sus etapas azul y rosa, sin embargo antes de lanzarse en la búsqueda de ese nuevo lenguaje pictórico ya había realizado algunas obras en donde se ve claramente una búsqueda sistemática de la estilización y reducción de las formas a lo esencial, como en Autorretrato con Paleta (1906), Retrato de Gertrude Stein (1906) o Dos Desnudos (1906). Cientos y cientos de bocetos con diferentes visiones y personajes que fue desechando a medida que iba alejándose de la realidad conocida y de la idea del arte como copia para dar paso a una mucho más conceptual en donde él imponía la suya propia, la realidad fue reducida a formas geométricas tal y cómo podemos observar en la versión definitiva de la obra en donde sólo aparecen las cinco prostitutas que se ofrecen al espectador. El cuadro que fue terminado en julio de 1907, sólo fue visto en un inicio por un reducido grupo de amigos y colegas del pintor entre esos su amigo y después su “socio” en el desarrollo del Cubismo, el pintor francés George Braque, que al ver la pintura habría expresado que era como cambiar la comida acostumbrada por otra con estopa y gasolina, en general los comentarios no fueron nada halagadores, incluso Henri

Matisse dijo que era un intento de ridiculizar el movimiento moderno del arte. A la obra sólo se la podía ver yendo al estudio del artista pues no se expuso públicamente hasta 1916, sin embargo antes de ese año fue conocida por un buen número de personas y su difusión fue más amplia de lo que muchos creen, como que en 1910 la revista norteamericana Architectural Record reprodujo una fotografía de la pintura en sus páginas como parte del reportaje a varios pintores titulado “Los hombres salvajes de Paris”.

La composición que finalmente nos presenta Picasso va más allá de lo que la sociedad de entonces estaba dispuesta a aceptar, pero como dije al inicio aún hoy esta obra es capaz de asombrarnos y de perturbar nuestro arraigado sentido de la belleza, las cinco damiselas con sus formas angulosas y geométricas se nos presentan cual sacerdotisas que se adentran en lo más profundo de nuestros ideales de armonía y simetría exorcizándolo todo, y aquella percepción que se centra en la belleza formal, que es sentimental y emotiva, se transmuta en mental porque se centra en la reflexión y las emociones que nos producen aquellas formas. Las dos figuras femeninas centrales tienen una fuerte influencia de la escultura íbera, la de la mujer abriendo la cortina nos recuerda a las figuras representadas en el arte egipcio así como su postura, las dos mujeres de la derecha con sus rostros deformes que no se corresponden con el resto son una evidente alusión al arte africano, la más extraña es la mujer sentada, está de espaldas pero a la vez nos está observando y es porque podemos verla desde diferentes ángulos, es decir Picasso incorpora el tiempo en una obra pictórica. Esta pintura está desprovista de perspectiva, así como la luz no tiene incidencia, por lo que el tradicional claroscuro ha sido eliminado casi por completo, con Les Demoiselles el pintor español había iniciado la primera etapa (negra) de lo que se llamó algunos años después Cubismo, que junto a los aportes decisivos de George Braque desembocaron en los cubismos analíticos y sintéticos.

Definitivamente Las Señoritas de Avignon fue una obra transgresora que conmocionó los círculos artísticos que se acercaron a ella, convirtiéndose en un verdadero símbolo del arte moderno, en plena primera guerra mundial (1916) se expuso en una exposición en el Salón d’Antin en París pero pasó casi inadvertida, pero poco después la pintura se hizo popular gracias al escritor André Breton quién la calificó como la obra más importante y relevante de la época, en 1921 fue comprada por Jacques Doucet, en 1937 fue exhibida en la Exposición Internacional y en 1939 fue adquirida por el Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) de Nueva York donde permanece hasta la actualidad.

Obra enigmática impregnada de misterio como aquellas máscaras del África negra que los chamanes utilizaban cómo un medio para entrar y escudriñar el mundo de los espíritus, en tal razón Les Demoiselles d’ Avignon trasciende lo meramente formal y se convierte en una obra que irradia aquel magnetismo mágico cual si fuese un amuleto protector contra los males de la sociedad moderna, lo que sería paradójico ya que con ella se inauguró la modernidad y el arte del siglo XX.


Fotos: Hdnh.es; mundoclasico.com; historia-arte.com; el acontecer; personajeshistoricos.com; Flickr

 

Acerca de Aurelio Paredes

Periodista de Profesión (Licenciado en Comunicación Social, graduado en la Universidad de Guayaquil), ecuatoriano de nacimiento, 59 años de edad y 37 años de experiencia. Empezó en 1982 como reportero radial y escaló posiciones hasta llegar a ser Editor de Deportes de Diario El Universo de Guayaquil, considerado el matutino de mayor circulación en Ecuador; Director de Revista Estadio (Deportiva) y Editor de Revista Vistazo (Política y Actualidad); presentador de televisión en varios programas deportivos; columnista de deportes y páginas humorísticas bajo el seudónimo de Delado; y guionista empírico en algunos programas de la televisión ecuatoriana. En la función pública fue Director de Comunicación de la Procuraduría General del Estado y en la empresa privada, Director de la Federación Deportiva Nacional del Ecuador.

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