I’ve always liked Picasso and have successfully followed his style. I too can draw heads with noses for ears and mouths where the chin should be.
“Are you an artist?” a teenage boy asked me in the Picasso exhibition in the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Rabat. Photos were not allowed so the sketchbook had come out.
“No mate. I just dabble,” I said to the group which had expanded to three.
.”You are better than Picasso!” he said loudly looking at my misshapen guitar and Mr Squiggle head I’d drawn. His words drew in another dozen teenagers.
I told him that mine was worth 1 dirham and Picasso’s was a 1 with many zeros. I wrote this on the drawing to emphasise the relative worth of both Picasso’s and my doodles!
The crowd, which had now gathered to over twenty, squeezed in on my ever decreasing air to peer at my sketches. The writhing mass was threatening to topple a fine Picasso Spanish guitar made from chicken wire, corrugated iron and fencing wire. The mayhem caused the security guards to shuffle forward nervously.
They’d already had a difficult morning preventing 100 or more preschoolers from scribbling on the walls with their worksheet crayons and their concerned glances and the hubbub brought an adult of authority. His respected voice ushered the crowd away.
We wondered how the students and teachers in this country might have reacted to some of Picasso’s work.
One particularly revealing sketch was done in his later years when I guess he couldn’t give a stuff about what others thought. It was titled,” Man with a hat beside a woman in an inviting pose.”
I drew it hurriedly, my hand cupped around it like a school boy doing a test as I nervously scribbled the inviting bits but the gallery was now deserted. My fickle fans had a bus to catch.