Saturday, October 25, 2014

Tous pour l'état, Pablo

Spanish expat, Pablo Picasso ended up living for the glory of France--as his heirs couldn't afford to pay the taxes on his art he left to them--and today you can again (after five years) view them at a former tax collector's home in Paris;
...the collection has two facets which make it unique. First, it covers all periods of the artist's life (though admittedly some more than others).
But second, and more important, it is made up of artworks which we know Picasso held dear.
Because he didn't sell them himself, since to do so would have subjected him to France's confiscatory income taxes. So the estate taxers gobbled them up. The French do irony;
The Hôtel Salé.... was built by a salt-tax farmer, Pierre Aubert.... Aubert made his fortune in the 1630s-1640s by various schemes, including an advantageous marriage and the purchase of successive appointments, eventually becoming an important financier on the Paris market and advisor and secretary to the King. Joining the salt tax offices, Pierre Aubert collecting tax on salt as a lump sum in the name of the king, consolidated his standing. His position created a name for the house, which quickly became known as the Hôtel Salé (“salé” meaning “salty” in French).
Which now houses the Musee Picasso. Before going, we suggest viewing the 1956 short film Le Mystere Picasso (which the French government has also expropriated);

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