Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh
23 May − 6
When Lee Miller
met Pablo Picasso in 1937, it was a meeting of minds that lasted more
than three decades up until Picasso's death in 1973. Somewhere
inbetween the pair became mutual muses, with Miller photographing
Picasso more than a thousand times, while Miller was painted by
Picasso numerous times.
The bond between
these two major artists is made clear in Lee Miller and Picasso, a
major new exhibition in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery's
Robert Mapplethorpe Gallery, and which forms part of the SNPG's 2015
Season of Photography. More than 100 images and objects selected from
the Lee Miller Archive will highlight Miller and Picasso's friendship
during turbulent times, and will include the wedding photograph of
Miller and English surrealist Roland Penrose.
Picasso's legacy is still very much with us,” explains the show's
curator Annie Lyden, “and their enduring friendship shows what it
was like to be around at that time in history through these very
intimate photographs. There are lots of images taken of Picasso and
his friends and colleagues, but very few of Miller and him together.”
The two stand-out
of these for Lyden show off how Miller and Picasso's friendship was
sustained despite long periods apart.
“One is from
1944,” Lyden says, “when Lee was working with the armed forces
during the liberation of Paris, and realises she's just round the
corner from Picasso's studio so she goes and sees him. There's a very
tender look between them, and you can see the joy and relief of them
finding one another again. The second is from 1970, and there's this
look that's shared, and after everything they've been through, you
can see the passing of time.
The List, May 2015