Becoming Picasso: Paris 1901, which closed 27 May 2013, attracted 137,438 visitors, the highest attendance figure ever achieved for a show at The Courtauld Gallery
, London . The previous record was 97,236 for Toulouse-Lautrec and Jane Avril: Beyond the Moulin Rouge, on view from 16 June to 18 September 2011.
Becoming Picasso told the remarkable story of Pablo Picassos breakthrough year as an artist 1901. It was the year that the highly ambitious nineteen-year-old first launched his career in Paris at a debut summer exhibition with the influential dealer Ambroise Vollard. Refusing to rest on the success of this show, Picasso (1881-1973) charted new artistic directions in the second half of the year, heralding the beginning of his now famous Blue period.
Ernst Vegelin, Head of The Courtauld Gallery, said: We are very encouraged that there continues to be such an appetite for our research-led approach to exhibitions. It is clear that audiences do not just want large blockbuster shows but also enjoy the opportunity of looking in depth at focused subjects.
Visitors to The Courtauld this summer will encounter the first in a new series of Summer Showcase displays entitled Collecting Gauguin: Samuel Courtauld in the '20s, 20 June to 8 September 2013. The Courtauld Gallery holds the most important collection of works in the UK by the Post-Impressionist master Paul Gauguin (1848-1903). Assembled by the pioneering collector Samuel Courtauld (1876-1947), it included five major paintings, ten prints and one of only two marble sculptures by the artist. With the loan of two important works formerly in Courtaulds private collection Martinique Landscape (Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh) and Bathers at Tahiti (Barber Institute of Fine Arts, University of Birmingham) this special summer display reunites the complete collection and is presented together with two double-sided drawings and archival material from the Gallery's collection.
Today, Gauguin is widely celebrated as one of the most important artists of the 19th century. Collecting Gauguin offers an opportunity to consider the contribution of Samuel Courtauld in developing the artists reputation in this country.