María de la Concepción, known as Maya, was born on September 5, 1935. During the first ten years of her life she was a constant subject in her father’s drawings and paintings, who observed with fascination and tenderness her physical and mental development. Her mother, Marie-Thérèse Walter, was the artist’s most iconic model. After meeting in 1927 at the Galeries Lafayette in Paris, Picasso and Marie-Thérèse began a long-lasting love affair, resulting in Picasso’s first daughter Maya.
Following Maya’s birth, Picasso chronicled intimate details of their private life together en famille, exploring the archetypal theme of maternity. Maya’s portraits reflect the great joy that she brought into the artist's life, even in the looming shadow of World War II. Out of all of Picasso’s children Maya was most frequently depicted—a muse in the image of her mother.
chalkgirlprofilesketchbookon vellum paper from spiral notebook37 × 31 cmand pasteldrawinggraphite