‘Femme assise robe bleue’ by Pablo Picasso is not only a remarkable Picasso picture, but one that comes with a striking backstory as this painting, which will hit the auction block at Christie’s Impressionist and Modern Art evening sale in May, represents a portrait of the Spanish master’s lover Dora Maar. It is inextricably intertwined with European history as Picasso painted it in on his birthday (October 25) in 1939, on the eve of the outbreak of World War II. Soon after its creation, the artwork was expropriated by the Nazis from its original owner, Picasso’s Jewish French art dealer Paul Rosenberg. Toward the end of the war, the artwork was due to be transported to Germany, but was traced, intercepted, and successfully captured by French Resistance fighters, who made it a priority to preserve French culture.
- courtesy of artnet news - Photo Carl Court - AFP - GettyImages