The Guernica Tapestry

The Guernica Tapestry was returned by Rockefeller family to its prominent place at the United Nations (UN), one year after its sudden disappearance from a wall at the UN.

Highlights

  • The vast tapestry represents Picasso’s iconic “Guernica”.
  • Rehanging of the immense weaving was underway on February 5, 2022.
  • Diplomats expressed relief on the return of 25-foot-wide work.
  • It was hung outside the Security Council chambers, where presidents, prime ministers and ambassadors regularly pass.

When was tapestry commissioned?

The tapestry was commissioned in 1955, by Nelson A. Rockefeller. It was woven in a French studio in consultation with Picasso. Picasso did his original “Guernica” painting during Spanish Civil War. The tapestry represents bombardment of the Spanish city of that name by German Nazi and Italian fascist force, on April 26, 1937.

Significance of Guernica Tapestry

The Guernica tapestry wrestles with cruelty, darkness and seed of hope within humanity, with its probing symbolism and its depiction of horrific aspects of human nature.

What is Guernica?

Guernica is a large oil painting on canvas, done by Spanish artist Pablo Picasso in 1937. It is one of his best-known works. This work is regarded by many art critics as most moving and powerful anti-war painting so far. The painting is exhibited in the Museo Reina Sofía in Madrid. It is a grey, black and white painting. It is 3.49 meters tall and 7.76 meters across. It portrays the suffering wrought by chaos and violence. Prominent in the painting are a gored horse, a bull, a dead body, screaming women, a dismembered soldier, and flames.

Pablo Ruiz Picasso

Pablo Ruiz Picasso was a Spanish painter, printmaker, sculptor, ceramicist and theatre designer. He spent most of his adult life in France. He is regarded as one of the most influential artists in 20th century. He is known for co-founding Cubist movement. His most famous works include proto-Cubist Les Demoiselles d’Avignon (1907), and Guernica (1937).

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