Pablo Picasso’s Painting from the Perspective of C.G. Jung’s Psychoanalysis

Marius CUCU, Oana LENTA


The Jungian psychoanalytical thinking will detach itself from the common opinion that often considers painting as an expression of the plastic artist’s critical opinions, as an image of what is supported by the lucidity of his consciousness. Jung will introduce in his own interpretation on the phenomenon of art the concept of unconscious, considering that the main source of inspiration and data that support the whole creational complex generated by an artist is the area of the individual unconscious and, especially, of the collective one. As a consequence, he will consider that the the pictorial images elaborated by Picasso, as one of the greatest modern artists, have their origin in the dimension of the unconscious psychic activity. Therefore, they would not represent an exercise of pictorial satire, of critical caricatures of the spatiotemporal or exterior reality, as Jung calls it, but, on the contrary, it would reveal another type of reality, the one of the unconscious telluric. In this context, Jung will ask himself, what could be Picasso’s pictorial characters that are representative for the unconscious drives? Who does the harlequin, the best-known of all these characters, the most represented subject in Picasso’s work represent? What correlations could exist between him and Faust’s image or that of Nietzsche’s buffoon?(Goethe, 1995; Nietzsche, 1996) Does the opening of Picasso’s art towards the unconscious prove to be a path breaker in relation to the subsequent developments of post-modern art? 


Unconscious, pictorial creation, psychic interiority, psychic exteriority, harlequin’s image, the neurotic type, the schizophrenic type.

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