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  • Writer's pictureJameson Farn

An International Art Hub for Picasso’s Last Home

The last home of world-renowned artist Pablo Picasso is being transformed by its current owner into an international art center with an estimated price tag of €114 million.

The artist, who still influences artists to this day, was in his time a sculptor, painter, and ceramist with the Cote d’Azur being one of his most inspiring areas of the world in which to live.

His last home in Mougins, formerly known as Mas Notre-Dame-de-Vie, later renamed Château de Vie is about to undergo a major transformation for others to enjoy, 50 years after his death.

It was announced that the property owner Rayo Withanage, a New Zealand billionaire, has set out plans to convert the villa into a “global hub” where art will flourish through collaborations with “major artists and institutions from around the world”. In 2017, Rayo Withanage bought the expansive and quite magnificent property at auction for 20 million euros and pledged 114 million euros to get the project underway.

“We invite the most iconic artists and creative institutions around the world to see the world as Picasso saw it, to work in his studio, and to consider the influence of his work,” he has said, adding that he envisions the villa to be a place where artists can work in-residence and that part of whatever proceeds are made from the sale of artworks will be donated to charities.

In the last years of his life, it has been said that Picasso’s time in Château de Vie was some of his more inspiring, productive, and overall happiest. After his passing, the property went to his wife Jacqueline Roque in 1973. Bereaved, Jacqueline had reportedly left everything exactly as it was the day he died, down to the place he last set down his reading glasses. She later committed suicide in 1986 and the property was left empty for 30 years.

Now, future generations will be inspired and exude life into the former home of Pablo Picasso and Jacqueline Rogue.


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