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Tu Vez Blast-From-The-Past Truck: Guernica

Marty McFly and Doc Brown had the Delorean to go travel through time; We have the Tu Vez Blast-From-The-Past Truck. Every week, we’ll hop in our time traveling machine, gun it to 88 MPH, and go back in time to bring you the best from the good ol’ days. Will it be a clip from an old telenovela? An old school music video? Stick around and find out!

By Jack Tomas

It was announced this week that Antonio Banderas will be playing Pablo Picasso in the upcoming film “33 Dias”. The film, by director Carlos Saura, will depict the 33 day period that Picasso spent painting his masterpiece “Guernica”. Many films have been made about Picasso, but none have focused on a singular work. It’s not hard to see why the director picked this painting out of all the thousands painted by Picasso in his life. If any work of art in the 20th century influenced world events, it was “Guernica”.

When we think about Picasso we usually think about paintings of weird square chicks with three boobs. But Picasso wasn’t only interested in painting the myriads of women he slept with. Picasso was a lifelong communist and he was an ardent supporter of the Republican forces during the Spanish Civil War. The painting depicts the horrific events of April 26, 1937 when Nazi planes, under orders from fascist leader Francisco Franco, bombed the Basque town of Guernica during a market day. No one knows exactly how many people died, but it was probably in the hundreds. Picasso was enraged at this act of naked aggression against civilians and set about depicting the slaughter on canvas. The painting shows mothers clutching dead children, horses in the throws of death, and people running desperately in chaos. Few paintings ever captured the feeling of desperation and horror of war better than “Guernica”

The painting had an immediate impact not only on the art world, but on all of society. “Guernica” went on a world tour raising awareness of what was going on in Spain. The funds raised by the exhibits went directly to the Republican cause. Alas, Franco won the war and remained in power until his death in 1975. Picasso never set foot in Spain again, refusing to return as long as Franco was in power. In the decades since, “Guernica” has been shown around the world and now lives in Spain at El Museo Reina Sofia. It has become one of the most iconic works of anti-war art. Though Picasso intended it as a depiction of a single event, it has become a symbol of the horror and futility of war. There is a tapestry copy of the painting in the Security Council room at the U.N. as a constant warning.

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