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Last Updated: Wednesday, 13 July, 2005, 14:46 GMT 15:46 UK
Picasso work acquired by gallery
Picasso's etching, Woman Weeping 1
Picasso's Weeping Woman 1 has been unveiled in Edinburgh
A famous Picasso etching, considered to be one of the most powerful images of sorrow and anxiety in Western art, has been acquired by a Scottish gallery.

Picasso's Weeping Woman I has been unveiled at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh.

It shows a woman's face dramatically contorted with pain and suffering.

The work was accepted in lieu of inheritance tax from the estate of the late arts figure Joanna Drew, who died in April 2003.

The etching's origins lie in Picasso's huge masterpiece Guernica, which focused on the horror of the German bombings of the Basque town in Spain in 1937.

Although a weeping woman did not appear in the finished mural, Picasso made a number of drawings and paintings of the image.

As well as providing a valuable insight into one of Picasso's most famous paintings, the etching is an important piece of modern European history
Patricia Ferguson
Culture Minister

This, the seventh and final state, is widely regarded as one of the greatest prints of the 20th Century.

Gallery director Richard Calvocoressi said he was overjoyed that one of Picasso's "most moving images" was now part of Scotland's national collection.

The public are being encouraged to view the rare print, which is said to be modelled on Picasso's lover Dora Maar.

Culture Minister Patricia Ferguson unveiled the artwork in the capital on Wednesday morning and urged people to go and view it.

It is by far the most important 20th Century print that we have in the National Galleries, by a long shot
Sir Timothy Clifford
National Galleries of Scotland

She said: "As well as providing a valuable insight into one of Picasso's most famous paintings, the etching is an important piece of modern European history and I would urge both those living in Scotland and those visiting from overseas to experience it for themselves."

Sir Timothy Clifford, director general of the National Galleries of Scotland, said the work was one of the 50 most important prints in the world.

He added: "It is by far the most important 20th Century print that we have in the National Galleries, by a long shot.

"Not only is it one of the most distinguished prints that we've got, it is also one of the most important images that the National Galleries has in its possession.

Weeping Woman

"It is comparable to Velazquez and Rembrandt. It is a wonderful, wonderful object."

Picasso's friend and biographer, Roland Penrose, bought the etching in 1937.

Penrose also owned the famous Weeping Woman painting, now at the Tate Modern.

Ms Drew, who was a major figure in the British arts world, was a director of exhibitions at the Arts Council of Great Britain in the 1970s.



SEE ALSO:
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Picasso's grandson turns biographer
31 Oct 04 |  Entertainment


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