140+ Best Pablo Picasso Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Pablo Ruiz Picasso was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, stage designer, poet and playwright who was the most dominant and influential artist of the first half of the 20th century. Profoundly inspirational Pablo Picasso quotes will challenge the way you think, change the way you live and transform your whole life.

Famous Pablo Picasso Quotes

The world today doesn’t make sense, so why should I paint pictures that do? – Pablo Picasso

When I was a kid I drew like Michelangelo. It took me years to learn to draw like a kid. – Pablo Picasso

Forcing yourself to use restricted means is the sort of restraint that liberates invention. It obliges you to make a kind of progress that you can’t even imagine in advance. – Pablo Picasso

That inspiration comes, does not depend on me. The only thing I can do is make sure it catches me working. – Pablo Picasso

My mother said to me, ‘If you are a soldier, you will become a general. If you are a monk, you will become the Pope.’ Instead, I was a painter, and became Picasso. – Pablo Picasso

Drawing is a kind of hypnotism: one looks in such a way at the model, that he comes and takes a seat on the paper. – Pablo Picasso

What I want is that my picture should evoke nothing but emotion. – Pablo Picasso

I try to paint what I have found and not what I look for. In art, intentions are of little importance. – Pablo Picasso

From the point of view of art, there are no concrete or abstract forms, but only forms which are more or less convincing lies. – Pablo Picasso

I’m a joker who has understood his epoch and has extracted all he possibly could from the stupidity, greed and vanity of his contemporaries. – Pablo Picasso

As far as I am concerned, a painting speaks for itself. What is the use of giving explanations, when all is said and done? A painter has only one language. – Pablo Picasso

He can who thinks he can, and he can’t who thinks he can’t. This is an inexorable, indisputable law. – Pablo Picasso

When it comes right down to it, all you have is your self. Your Self is a sun with a thousand rays. – Pablo Picasso

In art intentions are not sufficient and, as we say in Spanish, love must be proved by deeds and not by reasons. What one does is what counts and not what one had the intention of doing. – Pablo Picasso

When there’s dust missing here or there, it’s because someone has touched my things. I see immediately someone has been there. And it’s because I live constantly with dust, in dust, that I prefer to wear gray suits, the only color on which it leaves no trace. – Pablo Picasso

Painting isn’t made for the decoration of apartments; it is a weapon to be used offensively and defensively against the enemy. – Pablo Picasso

All human beings are born with the same creative potential. Most people squander theirs away on a million superfluous things. I expend mine on one thing and one thing only: my art. – Pablo Picasso

In drawing, nothing is better than the first attempt. – Pablo Picasso

You can’t escape your own period. Whether you take sides for or against, you’re always in it. – Pablo Picasso

But when I am alone, I do not have the effrontery to consider myself an artist at all, not in the grand old meaning of the word: Giotto, Titian, Rembrandt, Goya were great painters. I am only a public clown-a mountebank. I have understood my time and have exploited the imbecility, the vanity, the greed of my contemporaries. It is a bitter confession, this confession of mine, more painful than it may seem. But at least and at last it does have the merit of being honest. – Pablo Picasso

If I paint a wild horse, you might not see the horse… but surely you will see the wildness! – Pablo Picasso

Paradise is to love many things with a passion. – Pablo Picasso

If you know exactly what you’re going to do, what’s the good in doing it? – Pablo Picasso

I understand my own pictures best six months after I have done them. – Pablo Picasso

Style is besides the point. Nobody would pay attention if one always said the same thing, in the same words and the same tone of voice. – Pablo Picasso

When you begin a picture you often make some pretty discoveries. You must be on guard against these. Destroy the thing, do it over several times. In each destroying of a beautiful discovery, the artist does not really suppress it, but rather condenses it, makes it more substantial. What comes out in the end is the result of discarded finds. Otherwise you become your own connoisseur. – Pablo Picasso

Music and art are the guiding lights of the world. – Pablo Picasso

All things considered, there is only Matisse. – Pablo Picasso

A picture lives by its legend – not by anything else. – Pablo Picasso

Those trying to explain pictures are as a rule completely mistaken. – Pablo Picasso

What I have to do is utilize as best I can the ideas which objects suggest to me, connect, fuse, and color in my way the shadows they cast within me, illumine them from the inside. And since of necessity my vision is quite different from that of the next man, my painting will interpret things in an entirely different manner even though it makes use of the same elements. – Pablo Picasso

Almost every evening, either I went to [Georges] Braque’s studio or Braque came to mine. Each of us had to see what the other had done during the day. We criticized each other’s work. A canvas wasn’t finished unless both of us felt it was. – Pablo Picasso

Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. – Pablo Picasso

We all know that Art is not truth. Art is a lie that makes us realize truth at least the truth that is given us to understand. The artist must know the manner whereby to convince others of the truthfulness of his lies. – Pablo Picasso

The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls. – Pablo Picasso

In the end there is only Matisse. – Pablo Picasso

We don’t grow older, we grow riper. – Pablo Picasso

I begin with an idea and then it becomes something else. – Pablo Picasso

I don’t work from nature; I work like nature. – Pablo Picasso

Neither is there figurative and non-figurative art. All things appear to us in the shape of forms. Even in metaphysics ideas are expressed by forms. Well then, think how absurd it would be to think of painting without the imagery of forms. A figure, an object, a circle, are forms; they affect us more or less intensely. – Pablo Picasso

People are always asking me to sign my old canvases. It’s ridiculous! – Pablo Picasso

Variation does not mean evolution. If an artist varies his mode of expression this only means that he has changed his manner of thinking, and in changing, it might be for the better or it might be for the worse. – Pablo Picasso

Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up. – Pablo Picasso

Different themes inevitably require different methods of expression. This does not imply either evolution or progress; it is a matter of following the idea one wants to express and the way in which one wants to express it. – Pablo Picasso

I would like to manage to prevent people from ever seeing how a picture of mine has been done. What can it possibly matter? What I want is that the only thing emanating from my pictures should be emotion. – Pablo Picasso

Art is the elimination of the unnecessary. – Pablo Picasso

Titian, Rembrandt and Goya were the great painters. I am only a public clown. – Pablo Picasso

Painting is not made to decorate apartments. It’s an offensive and defensive weapon against the enemy. (about Guernica). – Pablo Picasso

Why did Plato say that poets should be chased out of the republic? Precisely because every poet and every artist is an antisocial being. He’s not that way because he wants to be; he can’t be any other way…. and if he really is an artist it is in his nature not to want to be admitted, because if he is admitted it can only mean he is doing something which is understood, approved, and therefore old hat – worthless. Anything new, anything worth doing, can’t be recognized. – Pablo Picasso

Whatever is most abstract may perhaps be the summit of reality. – Pablo Picasso

Why do you try to understand art? Do you try to understand the song of a bird? – Pablo Picasso

Computers are stupid. – Pablo Picasso

Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist. – Pablo Picasso

Give me a museum and I’ll fill it. – Pablo Picasso

The urge to destroy is also a creative urge. – Pablo Picasso

Everything is a miracle. It is a miracle that one does not dissolve in one’s bath like a lump of sugar. – Pablo Picasso

To model an object is to possess it. – Pablo Picasso

It’s not what the artist does that counts; it’s what he is. – Pablo Picasso

Anything new, anything worth doing, can’t be recognized. – Pablo Picasso

The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider’s web. – Pablo Picasso

If I had known there was such a thing as Islamic Calligraphy, I would never have started to paint. I have strived to reach the highest levels of artistic mastery, but I found that Islamic Calligraphy was there ages before I was. – Pablo Picasso

Good artists copy, great artists steal. – Pablo Picasso

Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone. – Pablo Picasso

If I paint a hammer and sickle people may think it is a representation of Communism, but for me it is only a hammer and sickle. I just want to reproduce the objects for what they are, not for what they mean. – Pablo Picasso

The path to youth takes a lifetime. – Pablo Picasso

If only we could pull out our brain and use only our eyes. – Pablo Picasso

Age only matters when one is aging. Now that I have arrived at a great age, I might as well be twenty. – Pablo Picasso

When you see what you express through photography, you realize all the things that can no longer be the objectives of painting. Why should an artist persist in treating subjects that can be established so clearly with the lens of a camera? – Pablo Picasso

Painting isn’t a question of sensibility; it’s a matter of seizing the power, taking over from nature, not expecting her to supply you with information and good advice. – Pablo Picasso

If you are trying to find something, it means you haven’t got it. And if you find it simply by looking for it, that means it’s false. – Pablo Picasso

It would be very curious to record by means of photographs, not the stage of the picture, but its metamorphoses. Perhaps one would perceive the path taken by the mind in order to put its dreams into a concrete form. But what is really very curious is to observe that fundamentally the picture does not change, that despite appearances the initial vision remains almost intact. – Pablo Picasso

Rhythm is a perception of time… when drawing, the tiredness of the hand is a rhythm. – Pablo Picasso

Never permit a dichotomy to rule your life, a dichotomy in which you hate what you do so you can have pleasure in your spare time. Look for a situation in which your work will give you as much happiness as your spare time. – Pablo Picasso

Art is something subversive. It’s something that should not be free. Art and liberty, like the fire of Prometheus, are things that one must steal, to be used against the established order. – Pablo Picasso

We have a lot of reasons but only one real one. – Pablo Picasso

It’s always necessary to seek for perfection. Obviously, for us, this word no longer has the same meaning. To me, it means: from one canvas to the next, always go further, further. – Pablo Picasso

Action is the foundational key to all success. – Pablo Picasso

When I paint a woman in an armchair, the armchair is there to show illness and death-or as a protection. – Pablo Picasso

People don’t realize what they have when they own a picture by me. Each picture is a phial with my blood. That is what has gone into it. – Pablo Picasso

I don’t say everything, but I paint everything. – Pablo Picasso

Why assume that to look is to see? – Pablo Picasso

Work is a necessity for man. Man invented the alarm clock. – Pablo Picasso

Success is dangerous. One begins to copy oneself, and to copy oneself is more dangerous than to copy others. It leads to sterility. – Pablo Picasso

Painting is stronger than me, it makes me do it’s bidding. – Pablo Picasso

Others have seen what is and asked why. I have seen what could be and asked why not. – Pablo Picasso

I have a real passion for bones. I have many others in Boisgeloup: skeletons of birds, dog’s and sheep’s heads. I even have a rhinoceros skull. – Pablo Picasso

The first half of life is learning to be an adult-the second half is learning to be a child. – Pablo Picasso

Cubism is not a reality you can take in your hand. It’s more like a perfume, in front of you, behind you, to the sides, the scent is everywhere but you don’t quite know where it comes from. – Pablo Picasso

The secret of many of my deformations – which many people do not understand – is that there is an interaction, an intereffect between the lines in a painting: one line attracts the other and at the point of maximum attraction the lines curve in toward the attracting point and form is altered. – Pablo Picasso

The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away. – Pablo Picasso

There is no abstract art. You must always start with something. Afterward you can remove all traces of reality. – Pablo Picasso

To finish a work? To finish a picture? What nonsense! To finish it means to be through with it, to kill it, to rid it of its soul, to give it its final blow the coup de grace for the painter as well as for the picture. – Pablo Picasso

Art sweeps the everyday dust from your soul. – Pablo Picasso

When the individuality of the artist begins to express itself, what the artist gains in the way of liberty he loses in the way of order. – Pablo Picasso

People who read are people who dream. – Pablo Picasso

How often have I found that wanting to use blue, I didn’t have it so I used a red instead of the blue. – Pablo Picasso

The artist must know the manner whereby to convince others of the truthfulness of his lies. – Pablo Picasso

Critics, mathematicians, scientists and busybodies want to classify everything, marking the boundaries and limits… In art, there is room for all possibilities. – Pablo Picasso

To know what you’re going to draw, you have to begin drawing. – Pablo Picasso

Never copy yourself, always copy someone else. – Pablo Picasso

Every now and then one paints a picture that seems to have opened a door and serves as a stepping stone to other things. – Pablo Picasso

Because I cannot work except in solitude, it is necessary that I live my work and that is impossible except in solitude. – Pablo Picasso

If you’re stuck in a painting, then stop and draw something else. Draw a flower and put your love into that flower. Then your powers will come back again. – Pablo Picasso

What is a face, really? Its own photo? Its make-up? Or is it a face as painted by such or such painter? That which is in front? Inside? Behind? And the rest? Doesn’t everyone look at himself in his own particular way? Deformations simply do not exist. – Pablo Picasso

Colors, like features, follow the changes of the emotions. – Pablo Picasso

Painting is a blind man’s profession. He paints not what he sees, but what he feels, what he tells himself about what he has seen. – Pablo Picasso

Every positive value has its price in negative terms… the genius of Einstein leads to Hiroshima. – Pablo Picasso

I do not evolve, I am. – Pablo Picasso

When we discovered cubism, we did not have the aim of discovering cubism. We only wanted to express what was in us. – Pablo Picasso

You must always work not just within but below your means. If you can handle three elements, handle only two. If you can handle ten, then handle only five. In that way the ones you do handle, you handle with more ease, more mastery, and you create a feeling of strength in reserve. – Pablo Picasso

I’d like to live like a poor man with a lot of money. – Pablo Picasso

What I capture in spite of myself interests me more than my own ideas. – Pablo Picasso

Why do two colors, put one next to the other, sing? Can one really explain this? no. Just as one can never learn how to paint. – Pablo Picasso

I don’t know in advance what I am going to put on canvas any more than I decide beforehand what colours I am going to use. – Pablo Picasso

What one does is what counts. Not what one had the intention of doing. – Pablo Picasso

God is really only another artist. He invented the giraffe, the elephant and the cat. He has no real style, He just goes on trying other things. – Pablo Picasso

The only thing emanating from my pictures should be emotion. – Pablo Picasso

It takes a long time to become young. – Pablo Picasso

If you give a meaning to certain things in my paintings it may be very true, but it is not my idea to give this meaning. What ideas and conclusions you have got I obtained too, but instinctively, unconsciously. I make the painting for the painting. I paint the objects for what they are. – Pablo Picasso

All children paint like geniuses. What do we do to them that so quickly dulls this ability? – Pablo Picasso

Without great solitude no serious work is possible. – Pablo Picasso

A plagiarist steals from one person. A true artist steals from everybody. – Pablo Picasso

I’m always doing things I can’t do. That’s how I get to do them. – Pablo Picasso

When I haven’t any blue I use red. – Pablo Picasso

Art is not chaste. Those ill prepared should be allowed no contact with art. Art is dangerous. If it is chaste, it is not art. – Pablo Picasso

The chief enemy of creativity is ‘good’ sense. – Pablo Picasso

Abstract art is only painting. And what’s so dramatic about that? There is no abstract art. One must always begin with something. Afterwards one can remove all semblance of reality; there is no longer any danger as the idea of the object has left an indelible imprint. – Pablo Picasso

The important thing is to create. Nothing else matters; creation is all. – Pablo Picasso

You have to start somewhere. You can always erase reality later on. – Pablo Picasso

Everybody has the same energy potential. The average person wastes his in a dozen little ways. I bring mine to bear on one thing only: my paintings, and everything else is sacrificed to it…myself included. – Pablo Picasso

One must act in painting as in life, directly. – Pablo Picasso

It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child. – Pablo Picasso

I paint the way someone bites his fingernails; for me, painting is a bad habit because I don’t know nor can I do anything else. – Pablo Picasso

There’s nothing so similar to one poodle dog as another poodle dog, and that goes for women, too. – Pablo Picasso

Go and do the things you can’t. That is how you get to do them. – Pablo Picasso

Style is often something which locks the painter into the same vision, the same technique, the same formula during years and years, sometimes during one’s whole lifetime. – Pablo Picasso

It is important to remember that great things have no fear of time. We’ve got to let go of the idea that what we want to manifest has to be done on our time schedule. – Pablo Picasso

I put in my pictures everything I like. So much the worse for the things – they have to get along with one another. – Pablo Picasso

When art critics get together they talk about Form and Structure and Meaning. When artists get together they talk about where you can buy cheap turpentine. – Pablo Picasso

Everyone wants to understand art. Why not try to understand the song of a bird? …people who try to explain pictures are usually barking up the wrong tree. – Pablo Picasso

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