Today we’re throwing back to 1881 to celebrate the 137th birthday of Pablo Picasso.  Born in Malaga, Spain to a father who taught drawing, little Pablo was a child prodigy and had his first exhibit at age 13.  By 1901, he had left Spain and had his first exhibit in Paris.  His reviews were so favorable, he decided to stay.

Over the course of his career, Picasso produced more than 50,000 drawings, paintings, sculptures, engravings and ceramics.  The guy was busy!  Picasso was noted for his Blue and Rose periods as well as playing a major role in the Cubism movement.

Here in Chicago, one of the highlights of anyone visiting is to see the giant Picasso sculpture in Daley Plaza.  The untitled 50 foot tall sculpture is from the artist’s Cubist work and was dedicated in 1967.  When asked to do a sculpture for the Daley Center, Picasso accepted by saying “You know I never accept commissions to do any sort of work, but in this case I am involved in projects for the two great gangster cities” (the other being Marseille, France). Picasso refused the $100,000 payment, considering his work a gift to the people of Chicago.

Happy Birthday Pablo Picasso!