Magnet / Picasso / Don Quixote / 54 x 79 mm
Don Quixote is a 1955 sketch by Pablo Picasso depicting the Spanish literary hero and his sidekick Sancho Panza. She was featured in the August 18-24 issue of the French weekly Les Lettres Francaises to mark the 350th anniversary of the publication of the first part of Cervantes' Don Quixote. The drawing Don Quijote, made on August 10, 1955, differs markedly from Picasso's earlier Blue Period, Pink Period and Cubist Period.
The painting shows Don Quixote de la Mancha, his horse Rocinante, his squire Sancho Panza and his donkey Dapple, the sun and several windmills. The bold, almost scrawled lines that make up the figures stand out clearly against a plain white background. The characters are almost laconic and deformed, and they are dramatic. Sancho Panza looks up at a tall, elongated, gaunt Don Quixote, who in turn is looking ahead. Don Quixote and Rocinante look noble but look a bit tired. Painted with bold brushstrokes, the figure seems to have been altered several times when Picasso painted the torso, arms and shoulder of Don Quixote. "The head of the knight, on which is the helmet of Mambrino, is connected to the shoulders by a neck formed by a single thin line, and has a pointed nose and a long goatee, just as thin. Carried in the right hand he holds a spear, in the left apparently the reins and a round shield. Rocinante is the bag of bones described by Cervantes. On the left appears Panza, a black mass only vaguely delineating his round body, and he is seated on Dapple, who has a long , wiry neck, and thin, long ears. Panza, sketched in the same manner, seems to have received little attention, perhaps because Don Quixote is the center of attention. Although the two figures appear to be standing still, the drawing is full of movement ; the lines are exuberant and the overall effect is memorable and light-heartedly humorous."