Picasso Museum

Museu Picasso

Most of the buildings in a murky street inside La Ribera district are medieval mansions belonging to wealthy citizens of Barcelona, who were long choosing this neighborhood as a place to live. One of these mansions (Palacio de Berenguer d'Aguilar) became home for the Picasso Museum. The idea to establish such a museum belonged to a close friend and personal secretary of Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), Jaume Sabartes. He provided the museum with his personal collection of the artist’s works, so initially the place had a name of the "Sabartes Collection", as Picasso was in a conflict with the authorities of Francoist Spain. As the collection was expanding, including because of the donations made by the artist’s second wife Jacqueline, Salvador Dali and Picasso himself, the building of the museum grew in size. Now it occupies five 13th-14th century palaces featuring several carefully renovated stone courtyards. Among the periods most comprehensively represented in the museum is Picasso’s early artwork (this period ended when he moved to Paris in 1904).

Picasso and his parents settled in Barcelona in 1895. City atmosphere bursting with art movements and influences had a huge impact on the development of Picasso’s talent, although the outstanding gift of then a boy started to manifest itself already in the city of Malaga where he was born. The museum display begins with the works of 1890, the Blue period, which offers a great set of paintings, graphics and ceramics. Take a closer look at such artworks as Science and Charity (1897), The roofs of Barcelona (1903), The dead woman (1903), Harlequin (1917), Pigeons (1957), as well as the famous series of Las Meninas – Picasso’s radical reinterpretation of the no less famous Las Meninas painting by Diego Velazquez.

The main display occupies the second floor of the buildings, the first is home to a shop where a complete variety of souvenirs can be purchased – from reproductions of your favorite paintings, sailor's striped vests (so loved by Picasso) to handkerchiefs, t-shirts, notebooks and other accessories. There is always a huge waiting line to the museum that stretches to the whole length of the street (especially during the free entry hours). If you didn’t buy the ticket online at least one day in advance (it is impossible to do it on the day of the visit), you can avoid the queue by purchasing a ticket not from a museum ticket office but in the Palau de la Virreina.

Address: Carrer Montcada, 15-23
Opening hours: Tue-Wed, Fri-Sun 9 am – 7 pm, Thu 9 am – 9.30 pm; closed on Mondays. Every Sun from 3 pm, every first Sun of a month open all day round, as well as February 12, May 17, September 24 – free entry; free entry to the shop and restaurant. One of the 6 city museums available for visit on a single ticket without waiting in lines (Barcelona Museum Pass).
How to reach: metro Jaume I
Coordinates: 41.385145, 2.180976