Going to the Fair

Pablo Picasso
Going to the Fair, 1900
Pastel and Watercolour
Gifted in 1989
Art Collection: EU0104

This early work from 1900 was produced by Picasso aged 19, prior to the artist leaving Barcelona for Paris in the October of that year. The style is reminiscent of the French Art Nouveau painter and printmaker Theophile Alexandre Steinlen’s (1859-1923) drawings, which had a strong influence on Picasso at the time. A related watercolour sketch showing two figures on a horse, titled Picador with Assistant (1900) is held within the Museu Picasso in Barcelona. Going to the Fair holds particular importance within UK collections as one of only six early Picasso works on paper, and only eleven works in total, from the period up to 1906.

Acquired in 1960 from the O’Hana Gallery, the work formed part of the personal collection of Hope Scott (1897-1989) and was bequeathed to the University upon her death. Born near Balerno, a daughter of the Younger family of brewers, Scott lived in the Scottish Borders and was married to a grandson of Walter Montagu Douglas Scott, the 5th Duke of Buccleuch (1806 – 84).

The larger part of the Hope Scott Collection consists of a group of works by William Johnstone (1897-1971), a close friend of Scott’s and an innovative Scottish abstract painter whose work has been hugely influential in recent decades. As well as 20th-century Scottish works by Joan Eardley, Samuel Peploe, William Gillies, FCB Cadell and Alan Davie, the collection holds four works by the European artists Pierre Bonnard, Max Ernst, Kees Van Dongen and Maurice Utrillo.

Story by Julie-Ann Delaney, Art Collections Curator

© Succession Picasso/DACS, London 2020