Miscellany and Trivia

Anecdotes about Vincent van Gogh – Five

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A widowed first cousin, Kee; a prostitute named Sien; shy, spinsterish Margot Bergemann; the seventeen-year-old peasant girl Stien de Groot – to all of them Vincent van Gogh would declare his love. In none of them would he find the wife to seal the emotional bond that he so perfectly imagined and ardently desired. He described it, too, in his correspondence, not only in the remarkable, justly famous letters exchanged with his brother Theo, but also in heartfelt missives to his aggrieved mother, his loyal sister Wil, and his devoted sister-in-law Johanna.

Anecdotes about Pablo Picasso – One

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A poor artist owned a supposed Picasso. He sent it via a friend for the master to authenticate it. Picasso: “It's false.”

From a different source the friend brought another and another Picasso-painting. Each time Picasso disowned them. Yet the third time the man said, “But I saw you paint this one with my own eyes.”

“I can paint false Picassos as well as anyone,” retorted Picasso. Then he bought the first painting for a sum four times as high as the owner had originally hoped it would fetch.

Anecdotes about Pablo Picasso – Two

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Picasso was relaxing on a beach in the south of France when he was accosted by a small boy clutching a blank sheet of paper. The child had evidently been dispatched by his parents to solicit an autographed drawing. After a moment's hesitation, Picasso tore up the paper and drew a few designs on the boy's back instead. He signed his name with a flourish and sent the child back to his parents. Relating the incident at a later date, Picasso remarked thoughtfully, “I wonder if they'll ever wash him again?”

Anecdotes about Pablo Picasso – Three

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American Gertrude Stein was a big fan of Picasso, buying many paintings from him in the early days of his career. She is known for the portrait that Picasso painted of her in 1905. The painting required 90 sittings and when it was completed it was given to Stein as a gift. She told Picasso that the portrait didn’t look like her. He responded: “it will.”

Anecdotes about Pablo Picasso – Four

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People often asked Picasso to pay his bills with a drawing. He reportedly once refused to sign one of these drawings saying, “I’m buying a meal, not the whole restaurant.”

Anecdotes about Pablo Picasso – Five

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During World War II Picasso suffered some harassment from the Gestapo in Nazi-occupied Paris. An inquisitive German officer, coming into his apartment, noticed a photograph of Guernica lying on a table. “Did you do that?” he asked Picasso. “No, you did,” said Picasso.

Anecdotes about Albert Einstein (1)

MTr. Anecdotes 2 Albert Einstein

“When I was young I found out that the big toe always ends up making a hole in a sock, “Einstein once recalled. “So I stopped wearing socks.”

Anecdotes about Albert Einstein (2)

MTr. Anecdotes 3 Albert-Einstein-

Speaking at the Sorbonne during the 1930s, Einstein said, “If my relativity theory is verified, Germany will proclaim me a German and France will call me a citizen of the world. But if my theory is proved false, France will emphasize that I am a German and Germany will say that I am a Jew.”

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