Picasso’s "Man with a Lamb": Opposites as One

Surely, this monumental sculpture of a man with his feet on the earth as he rises over seven feet exemplifies that oneness of opposites which Eli Siegel, founder of the philosophy Aesthetic Realism, described as central in life and art. This is Mr. Siegel’s question in his immortal Is Beauty the Making One of Opposites? on “Heaviness and Lightness”:

Is there in all art, and quite clearly in sculpture, the presence of what makes for lightness, release, gaiety?—and is there the presence, too, of what makes for stability, solidity, seriousness?—is the state of mind making for art both heavier and lighter than that which is customary?

Looking at Picasso’s Man with a Lamb in 1945, shortly after the figure arrived in New York, I was so struck by the impact of this man, roughly hewn, heavy, mute, coming towards us over many centuries... read more

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