Madre con niño muerto (II). Postscripto de «Guernica» (Mother with Dead Child [II]. Postscript of "Guernica")

Pablo Picasso (Pablo Ruiz Picasso)

Malaga, Spain, 1881 - Mougins, France, 1973
  • Date: 
    1937 (September 26th, Paris)
  • Technique: 
    Oil on canvas
  • Dimensions: 
    130 x 195 cm
  • Category: 
  • Entry date: 
  • Register number: 
  • Picasso Bequest, 1981

The motif of the mother holding the dead child is one of the most significant in Guernica, and this image of motherhood was to become an obsession with Pablo Picasso, who continued to depict it after the mural was completed. The pictures done once the painting was finished, on June 4th 1937, are known as the ‘postscripts’ to Guernica, meaning work done in the painting’s wake but still linked formally and conceptually to it, such as is the case with this painting, Madre con niño muerto (II). Postscripto de «Guernica» (Mother with Dead Child [II]. Postscript for “Guernica”, September 26th) or in a subsequent development of the subject, in the numerous heads of weeping women.
As in other Picasso artworks known for their social content, in Madre con niño muerto (II) the artist decided against the use of colour, in the strict sense of the term. The choice to use monochrome could be the result, therefore, of a desire to accentuate the abstract side of reality, resulting in the transformation of a specific event into a universal archetype.

Paloma Esteban Leal