Custom «Pablo Picasso and his “Guernica”» Sample Essay

Custom «Pablo Picasso and his “Guernica”» Sample Essay

Numerous artists have created thousands of outstanding masterpieces against iniquity and injustice, but just few of them have been so profound and powerful that people responsible for the crimes avoid appearing next to the artwork that condemns them. Guernica created by the legendary artist of the 20th century Pablo Picasso is deservedly regarded as the most renowned and best artwork of all times. The Spanish artist considered his Guernica as not an interior decoration but an instrument of the war for defense and attacks against the enemies (Boeck and Sabartes 505). The artist produced this influential and powerful work as an antiwar political statement regarding the bloody events that occurred in Spain in 1937. It was Picasso’s personal and immediate reaction to the Hitler’s invasion and further devastating and ruinous bombing of the town Guernica during the Civil War in Spain (1936-1939). In Guernica, Picasso greatly reflected the tragedy of the Spanish war and the ongoing suffering of innocent ordinary civilians. The masterpiece has already become an incredible and distinguished antiwar symbol and a sober reminder of the tragic consequences of the war.


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As the deep embodiment of peace, Guernica deservedly gained the world admiration and recognition with the monumental status. Although Pablo Picasso asserted that the only audience could characterize and identify the correct meaning of his masterpiece, Guernica is deemed as a piece of art that greatly conveyed fatal results of the war, violence, and impact on the Spanish nation. The artwork became a prophetic and timely vision of the World War II and now public recognizes it as an international icon for justice and peace.

Without a doubt, Guernica is the most significant antiwar artwork created in the twentieth century. An excellent piece of art deserves public’s serious attention since it is a great testament to the horrors caused by fascist regime. Guernica testifies to the power of war, innocent victims, and irreversible destruction; thus, today it should serve as a warning sign to all nations. As a life-asserting anti-war statement of the modern art, the work Guernica occupies a deserved place among most of the remarkable Spanish treasures, including masterpieces of Velasquez, Goya, and El Greco. The muted and neutral tones, the intensity of each Guernica’s motif, and the way Picasso chose to articulate it are essential elements in the representation of the tragedy itself. Moreover, Guernica attracts a variety of arguable interpretations because of the Picasso’s intentional using of grayish tones in the artwork. The artist refused to give a particular explanation of his imagery; however, he admitted that the bull in the painting represented darkness and brutality, leaving allegorical interpretation of people and a horse depicted to the viewers (Southworth 148).

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Picasso contrasted the overwhelming painting’s size; faces caught with the expression in the moment of terror, the animated images of broken bodies along with displaced limbs with the symbol of the Spanish bull and juxtaposed them with the dystopian final. The artwork represents affecting and powerful images of devastation caused by the hostilities, namely a crying woman, who carries the dead child’s body, a screaming conflagrant man, and a bewildered horse. Nowadays public cannot escape the unseen terror and horror of the twentieth-century Spain. Initially, Guernica was supposed to represent a terrifyingly vivid historical depiction of a single awful event than a universalized symbol of the war and terror. However, the public outcry over this artwork has shown its power to depict the horror of the war through art and painter’s skills. For most of the Spanish citizens, Guernica by Pablo Picasso symbolizes the Basque people and their fight for freedom (Martin 252). The unfolding chaos provokes a strong and intense sense of oppression. The lack of bright and shining colors makes the tragic and violent scenes of Guernica more terrifying. Guernica as a universal, powerful, and world-renowned symbol warns today’s generation about the civilian suffering and devastation that any war can cause.

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For some people, Picasso’s masterpiece is the impersonation of the Spanish art, a touchstone of time and people that reflects an era of transcendent historicism. Pablo Picasso represented himself as a beguiling Spanish hero, who fought for the immortal ideals. His masterpiece Guernica often meets resistance and criticism. Once, it was even vandalized at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City (MOMA). However, finally, the work settled down to its status as the best-known creation of the famous modern artist. Guernica remains an eternal reminder of those terrible events that occurred in Spain as well as all the wars that have gone and a portent of the next wars.

The artwork Guernica by Picasso represents the way the master did the revolution in the contemporary art. The Spanish master made audience recognize the stark reality of fascism, and his long-acknowledged piece of art was a testimony that the art can transfigure the catastrophe. Picasso’s genius was that he could imagine and feel the horror. The artist greatly turned terror into the artistic work that has taught people profound, difficult, and, at the same time, good things to do. Undoubtedly, Guernica remains the most powerful political piece of art that was ever produced and enormously valuable masterpiece in the art history.

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Undoubtedly, Guernica has challenged human notion of the heroic warfare and exposed it as a cruel act of self-destruction. A hallmark of the Picasso’s art is that any of his symbols and images can hold many contradictory meanings. The precise meaning of the Guernica’s images remains vague to some people. As the anti-war masterpiece and the world’s most iconic painting, the legendary symbol of protest Guernica keeps the memory of the town’s nightmare alive even today, seventy-five years later.

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