Françoise Gilot, an accomplished painter and writer whose stormy relationship with Pablo Picasso often overshadowed her work, has died in a Manhattan hospital, aged 101.
Gilot was a French artist and writer, born November 26, 1921, in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France. She is best known for her painting career and relationship with renowned artist Pablo Picasso. Gilot studied at the Sorbonne in Paris, where she pursued a law degree. However, her passion was art, and she eventually focused on painting. In the early 1940s, she began exhibiting her work in Paris and gained recognition for her distinct style, combining Cubism and abstraction elements.
In 1943, Gilot met Pablo Picasso, already considered the greatest living artist. They developed a romantic relationship and became a couple, living together for nearly a decade. Gilot’s artistic skills continued evolving during this period, and she developed her unique creative voice. She also had two children with Picasso: Claude and Paloma.
Gilot’s relationship with Picasso was tumultuous, and she eventually decided to end their relationship in 1953. After their separation, she continued to pursue her career as an artist and gained international recognition for her work. She held numerous exhibitions in major cities worldwide, including New York, London, and Tokyo.
In addition to her painting, Gilot was also a talented writer. She authored several books, including her memoir “Life with Picasso,” which provided insights into her experiences with the legendary artist. Gilot’s writing explored her artistic journey and her challenges as a woman in the male-dominated art world.
Vibrant colours, bold brushstrokes, and a sense of energy and movement characterise Françoise Gilot’s artwork. Her subjects often included landscapes, still life, and portraits, focusing on capturing the essence and spirit of her subjects rather than creating realistic representations.
Today, Gilot is regarded as a significant figure by the art world for her artistic contributions and her personal story. Her works can be found in major museums and private collections worldwide. She died of heart and lung complications.