A visit to Antibes usually affords me the luxury of a walk through the old town to Chateau Grimaldi, the home of the Musée Picasso. It is a beautiful building, sufficiently small enough to allow for a visit in less than half a day, sufficiently large enough to be satisfied with that visit.
I have been to the museum often enough to know whose work in the permanent collection I want to make a beeline for. The first floor rooms contain the work of husband and wife artists Hans Hartung and Anna-Eva Bergman. I pay my respects to Hartung's abstractions, but it is Bergman's work that I muse over. I love her use of gold and other metal leaf in her works.
Before having a detailed look at the current exhibition of Picasso photographs by Irish photographer Edward Quinn (a quick google search will provide plenty of images), I visit my ultimate favourite painting in the museum. I have featured Nicolas de Stael's Le Concert in a previous blog, but it is always worth looking at again. Unlike de Stael's other large painting in the museum, Le Concert is not a heavily impastoed painting and I actually came across a reference to it being unfinished. It may have been his last large painting and I think it is gorgeous. I love it.
On the opposite wall to Le Concert, was a smaller de Stael painting that I had not taken particular note of in previous years. The painting is of Fort Carré and as I passed de Stael's former residence on the coast on my way to the museum, I know it is a view from his Antibes home. I have never seen the fort on a grey day, so I have the feeling it was painted in winter. (Though my first visit to Antibes many years ago was at the end of December and it was quite sunny and warm!)
On the outdoor terrace overlooking the Mediterranean a number of large sculptures are installed. I particularly love the bronze La Grande Spirale by Germaine Richier. There are a number of Richier's familiar figure sculptures on the wall of the terrace, but it is this piece, reminiscent of a broken seashell that attracts me.