The back of Nude Woman in a Red Armchair, a 1932 painting by by Pablo Picasso, is inscribed with the words ’Boisgeloup 27 Juillet 1932’ – leaving some experts to question whether the painting was completed in just one day.
At Tate’s conservation lab, our team examined the painting and made some interesting discoveries about Picasso’s technique and use of paint.
This painting belongs to the remarkable sequence of portraits that Picasso made of Marie-Thérèse Walter at his country property at Boisgeloup. Marie-Thérèse is presented here, as in most of her portraits, as a series of sensuous curves.
Even the scrolling arms of the chair have been heightened and exaggerated to echo the rounded forms of her body. The face is a double or metamorphic image: the right side can also be seen as the face of a lover in profile, kissing her on the lips.