David Douglas Duncan presents a photographic record of the life which Picasso and Jacqueline shared together in their home. The author was a friend of the couple and records the time he spent with them, from his first visit in 1956 to Picasso's death in 1973 and afterwards, until Jacqueline herself died in 1986. He portrays their everyday domestic life, their leisure time and intimate moments and also shows Picasso at work on his paintings. Duncan recalls "The three of us enjoyed a life so close and casual and natural that I was able to use my cameras as though neither they nor I existed". Duncan is a well-known photographer and has written over 16 books.
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Photographer-writer Duncan describes Picasso's romance with Jacqueline Roque as an "epic love story," but on the evidence of this cloying photo album their live-in affair and marriage looks more like a mindlessly cheerful 1950s sitcom. We see Picasso cavorting with his children by Francoise Gilot, encouraging his dachshund to eat off the table, cleaning the bathtub (no male chauvinist pig, this guy!). We see him posing as clown and bullfighter ad nauseam. We see him transforming Jacqueline's sad, uptight face into an "empress-profiled" mythic figure on canvas. But we learn absolutely nothing about the inner workings of their relationship. Duncan, author of Goodbye Picasso and Picasso's Picassos , splices photographs with embarrassingly purple captions and self-aggrandizing text. Jacqueline, who committed suicide after Picasso's death, is insulted by Duncan, who labels her "one of his Blue Period lost souls."
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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