The 14th century Chateau Grimaldi, an impressive building overlooking Cap d’Antibes, was home to Pablo Picasso in 1946 for one year – a place from where he worked and lived out of a second floor studio. Coming here for the view alone is well worth the visit!
In 1966, the building officially became the Picasso Museum and has been transformed into a wonderful gallery housing a small collection of works which Picasso donated to the city – 44 drawings and 23 paintings, most notable being The Goat and La Joie de Vivre.
There is also an intriguing collection of black and white photographs by the famed celebrity photographer Edward Quinn, depicting Picasso’s life largely in the “Golden Fifties”. The photos evoke what seems a fun time in his life – socialising with friends and relaxing, with Quinn being known to capture the rich and famous off-guard during their stay on the Côte d’Azur.
This extraordinary building is also home to many splendid sculptures, by the likes of Germaine Richler, Joan Miró, Bernard Pagès, and Anne and Patrick Poirier. Just viewing them in this setting against the Mediterranean backdrop makes the experience all the more special. I can now understand why there is a colour called “Mediterranean Blue”. There were also some stunning abstract works on display by Nicolas de Staël and Hans Hartung that are not to be missed.
(Musée Picasso, Place Mariejol, 06600 Antibes, France)
By Diane Bilimoria, London