The Mystery of Picasso

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The Mystery of Picasso
Directed byHenri-Georges Clouzot
Produced byHenri-Georges Clouzot[1]
Screenplay byHenri-Georges Clouzot[1]
Music byGeorges Auric[1]
CinematographyClaude Renoir[1]
Edited by
  • Henri Colpi
  • Henri-Georges Clouzot[1]
Release date
  • 18 May 1956 (1956-05-18) (France)

The Mystery of Picasso (French: Le mystère Picasso) is a 1956 French documentary film about the painter Pablo Picasso, directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot, and showing Picasso in the act of creating paintings for the camera. Most of the paintings were subsequently destroyed so that they would only exist on film, though some may have survived.[2]

The film begins with Picasso creating simple marker drawings in black and white, gradually progressing to full scale collages and oil paintings.

This famous art movie wasn't the first documentary showing Picasso painting images on glass plates from the viewpoint of the camera. The Belgian documentary film Visit to Picasso (1949) did it almost seven years earlier.


The Mystery of Picasso was released in France on 18 May 1956.[1] It won the Special Jury Prize at the 1956 Cannes Film Festival[3] and was shown out of competition at the 1982 Festival.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Le Mystère Picasso". (in French).
  2. ^ Klady, Leonard (March 1986). "Return of the Centaur". Film Comment. 22 (2): 20–22.
  3. ^ "Festival de Cannes: The Mystery of Picasso (In Competition)". Retrieved 2009-02-05.
  4. ^ "Festival de Cannes: The Mystery of Picasso (Out of Competition)". Retrieved 2009-06-13.

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