Today I went to the Picasso exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria. The paintings, prints and sketches that were on display were from the period between 1935 and 1945 when he was in a relationship with French photographer Dora Maar.

One thing that I wondered about when I was looking at the artwork was whether Picasso was in fact the artistic genius that everyone claims him to be, or just an artist who found a gimmick in cubism, which then propelled him to fame and fortune. Since I came home I have been on the internet and discovered that some of the paintings that Picasso did in the early part of his career before he started the cubism movement, and I must say that they are very beautiful and that Picasso was indeed a fine artist.

That has left me wondering as to whether the paintings that I saw today, which are all cubist, are great works of art or just overhyped rubbish. Art always encourages such debate and not everyone can agree on what actually is art and what is not. Most people do not consider comic books to be art yet since the 1990s many comic and cartoon art galleries have sprung up while even proper stuffy art galleries and museums have displayed comic and animation art. People now spend thousand of dollars for original comic book artworks or cartoon cells while even horrible comic book artists such as Rob Leifeld have many fans. (Although there should be no debate about Leifeld, his work is simply horrible!!!)

Many of the paintings that hung in the gallery today I did not particularly like but there were others there that I did enjoy immensely. Reading up on Picasso and about his cubist period, I discovered that he did these paintings very quickly and many of them look as though little time was spent on them. Perhaps by the time he had became famous Picasso decided to make as many works of art as possible so that he could sell them so as to make as much money as possible. (But then again, he hoarded his paintings and only sold them when he needed to!!!)