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Recieved catalog

We envision a work in four volumes, organized chronologically.

The chronology of the volumes is as follows: volume I (1898-1914), volume II (1915-1927), volume III (1927-1939), volume IV ( 1940-1953)

Works not included in the printed volumes will be incorporated into an online volume.



The volumes are available on the Mercator Fund website

Fonds Mercator, Partenaire du comité Picabia
Catalogue raisonné vol4.jpg

Catalog Raisonné volume IV

1940 - 1953


This book, the fourth volume of the ambitious catalog raisonné of the work of Francis Picabia (1879-1953), lists the paintings and a selection of drawings from the years 1940 to 1952. During the war, when he was still living in the South of France, Picabia mainly devoted himself to figurative subjects – allegories with several figures, nudes and seductive female “portraits” – painted in a bold illusionist style with marked reliefs.

Already scandalous during his lifetime, most of these works have since turned out to be reinterpretations of photographs that appeared in charming magazines and other pre-war publications for the general public.

Returning to Paris in 1945, Picabia revived his interest in abstract and non-figurative art, once again drawing inspiration from published sources whose themes ranged from prehistoric art to the work of Friedrich Nietzsche. . In search of frequent exhibitions, he continues to make known his singular and constantly changing responses to the critical currents of the time. The series of paintings known as "points", with subtle and effective minimalism, was born in 1949, three years before illness put an end to half a century of artistic provocations by Francis Picabia.


Catalog Raisonné volume III



The third of four volumes in the catalog raisonné dedicated to the work of Francis Picabia (1879-1953), this important volume presents the paintings and a selection of drawings made between 1927 and 1939 by this leading avant-garde artist. The innovative collages and flamboyant figurative works that dominated his output in the mid-1920s gave way in 1927 to new directions. The main one consists in the exploration, in various forms, of the idea of transparency, first by adding new elements to already existing creations, then by developing more complex compositions, known precisely under the name of “Transparencies”. The artist superimposes the contours of characters, animals, plants and motifs of various origins. However, always resistant to the idea of stylistic cohesion, he also produced imposing figurative paintings with strong lines and saturated colors, topographical views with a thick touch, curvilinear abstractions, then, towards the end of this period, represented characters inspired by photographs, which announce his famous nudes of the early 1940s.

Francis_Picabia_Catalogue_raisonné_volume II

Catalog Raisonné volume II



This book is the second volume of an ambitious catalog raisonné project devoted to the works produced by Francis Picabia (1879-1953) and focuses in particular on his creations from 1915 to mid-1927. At that time, the artist, in full elaboration of his machinist aesthetic, plays a central role in the development of the Dada movement in Paris. Increasingly provocative, the mechanomorphic compositions he then imagined were among the major achievements of this movement synonymous with irreverence. The volume ends with the creations of the mid-1920s: the famous collages and the famous series of "monsters", which the artist declines in flamboyant figurative compositions.

Throughout this book, the best specialists give us their reading of a highly singular artistic approach. The catalog raisonné also includes the reproduction of each of the works with its factual data, a chronology, the complete list of exhibitions as well as a detailed bibliography.

Francis_Picabia_Catalogue_raisonné_ volume I

Catalog Raisonné volume I


This work is the first of four volumes of the catalog raisonné of Francis Picabia, one of the most important and provocative artists of the 20th century. Volume 1 covers Picabia's career from his early impressionist works of 1898 to his cubist and abstract paintings of 1912-1914, which are landmarks in the history of modern art. This book takes into account new scientific and critical readings of his work and piques curiosity with lesser-known pieces. In addition to illustrations of all the works mentioned, it includes an introduction, a chronology, a bibliography and extracts from the main source documents used. Volumes II-IV will explore Picabia's foundational role in Dadaism, followed by a series of figurative styles, and then, towards the end of his life, a return to deeply personal abstract art. An addendum is planned for the paintings that will resurface after the publication of the initial volumes and the majority of his works on paper.

Other Publications

Coffret DVD

Be careful with paint...

And to Francis Picabia!

DVD set

Directed by Rémy Ricordeau

After having, with his friend Marcel Duchamp, decreed the death of art, Francis Picabia has become an essential reference in the eyes of those who are interested in the history of modern art and its relationship to freedom._cc781905- 5cde-3194-bb3b-136bad5cf58d_
“Our head is round to allow thought to change direction,” he said. His humor should be taken seriously: the coherence of his approach resides in fact in his insatiable curiosity and his immoderate taste for speed and play, this desperate thirst for life which did not put up with any conformism or no other rule than that of the desire to experience everything. 
If he was also a writer, poet and car enthusiast, life in all its excesses was in his eyes preferable to his work; and the game of passions to the morbidity of dogmatisms. 
This film thus sets out to retrace the life of Francis Picabia by underlining the importance of his singularity in the intellectual and artistic history of the 20th century.

Album Picabia

Album Picabia

The Picabia Album is an inspiring artistic chronicle of the life of Francis Picabia(1879–1953), as seen by his last_cc781905-5cde-3194-6_bad5 wife and wife  Olga Mohler Picabia. Started in 1936, four years before their marriage, and left unfinished in 1951, two years before Picabia's death, this album is a collection of_cc781905-5cde-3194- bb3b-136bad5cf58d_memories, sketches, newspaper clippings, photographs and notes illustrating the public and private lives of the artist with  as much admiration as affection.

By its richness, this account visual rendering reveals all the depth of one of the most remarkable and least known_cc781905-5cde-3194-bb3b-136_bad5cf58d_romantic and creative complicities of the xx century.

Aujourd'hui pense à moi Francis Picabia, Ego, Image

today think of me

Francis Picabia, Ego, Image

Aurélie Verdier - Real press

“I am nothing, I am Francis Picabia”. It is in this tension between exaltation and rejection of the self that the artist has indicated his position in modernity. His refusal of collective action was expressed at the heart of the Great War in a work centered not on history or on plastic problems, but on the self. A conceptual character of the avant-garde, ego is linked to the analysis that Sigmund Freud made in 1915 of melancholy, understood as a pathological imitation of mourning and as the loss of the self. This work strives to revise some of the best established certainties about the artist - such as his refusal of repetition and his taste for contradiction - to propose seeing in ego a capital actor in the history of modern forms, producer of his own ruptures. Covering a period that goes from Orphism in 1913 to the maximalist painting of Monsters in 1924-1927, the first part analyzes the portrait, the stain and the proper name as three "objects of the self" in Picabia, breaking with the traditional representation of the subject and authorial codes. A second part examines three examples of the painter's procedures: first, with the omnipresence of the round in his work, this sign of an uncertain ego matches another circularity, attributed to melancholy and mania. Then, Picabia's ambivalent relationship to the figure of Picasso is considered as an alternative to the idea of influence. Finally, it is from the secret reuse that the artist made of mechanical images that arises Picabia's reactionary response to the threat of a mechanization of art disavowed in his speech, but identifiable everywhere in the work.

Francis Picabia Rastaquouère, B_edited_e

Francis Picabia,


Bernard Marcadé - Flammarion

“In his fifty years of painting, Picabia has consistently avoided clinging to any formula or wearing any badge. He might be called the greatest exponent of freedom in art, not only against the slavery of the academies, but also against submission to any dogma. »

These remarks by Marcel Duchamp underline the profoundly libertarian dimension of the man who liked to call himself an “artist of all kinds”.
This chaotic, contradictory course, made of permanent back and forth between abstraction and figuration, geometry and biomorphism, dreamlike and realism, cannot be apprehended in a simply formal way. It remains difficult to identify a Picabia style or manner. What a biographical approach allows us, on the contrary, to understand is precisely a certain constancy in attitude. This son of a family “born without a mother”, with particularly pronounced luxury tastes and a troubled mental and conjugal life, is indeed not short of a contradiction. Francis Picabia abhors nothing so much as the ideal of purity and intransigence that he sees emerging in his Dadaist friends and even in André Breton.
Picabia loves life too much to allow himself to be locked into a belief or a certainty, even if they are avant-garde. Until his death, our "Funny-Guy" will remain faithful to this state of mind, which refers more to a way of life than to a strictly artistic program.
What could pass for a series of denials and regressions is in fact only a way of saying yes to life, to its wanderings and its contradictions. Francis Picabia is the artist who made his honey of this "death of art" so often proclaimed during the XXᵉ century. “Because I am the only one who, after the death of Art, did not inherit it; all the artists who follow his procession and wander around the world figured in his will; me, he disinherited me, but he thus left me free to say whatever comes into my head and to do what I please. »

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