Paloma Picasso, born in 1949 to influential artist Pablo Picasso, has independently introduced fresh perspectives in to the world of fashion design including eyewear, cosmetics and leather goods.
As a teenager developing her own artistic style Picasso was reluctant to pursue anything involving art. "In the beginning, I tried not to think that I would have to do anything artistic, " she said in an interview. "From the time I was fourteen, I stopped drawing completely. … I thought, 'I don't want to become a painter like my father, ' but I didn't know what else I wanted to become." Her creative urges soon suppressed her hesitation and she began to study jewelry design and fabrication while still in her teens.
After her father passed in 1973, Paloma Picasso lost her passion for design. "I had given up designing when my father died" she told the New York Times. "I didn't feel like doing anything. I just looked at all the paintings, and there was the sense of being overwhelmed." Picasso temporarily gave up designing but got into another artistic endeavor starring in the critically acclaimed, award winning movie, 1974's Immoral Tales (Contes Immorreaux).
Picasso would later work for Argentine playwright and director Rafael Lopez-Cambil (known by his pen name, Rafael Lopez-Sanchez) designing the sets for some of his productions. The couple became intimately involved and would later marry in 1978.
In 1980, John Loring, senior vice-president of Tiffany & Company, asked Picasso to create jewelry for the company. "When Tiffany's asked me about doing jewelry, I was thrilled, " Picasso said she had always wanted to design for an American store. "I went into all the great jewelry shops of Paris. They are so grand, the salespeople seem to look down on you. As a customer you feel threatened. Tiffany is a great place because all kinds of people come in, just like Woolworth's." The pieces Picasso created are priced from just over $100 to $500,000. "Paloma has taken the gaudiness out of jewelry but kept the glitter, " said Loring and Henry B. Platt, Tiffany's president stated that "for the first time, people can hold a Picasso in their hands and try it on."
Paloma Picasso's creative style usually consists of gems framed in blocks of gold, large stones or metal pendants on simple cords and gold or silver. Her tenth anniversary collection, which was presented in 1990, was described in Mirabella magazine as "having the raw power of just-cut stones and just-mined minerals. Her gems are deep pools of color hung on thick veins of gold."
In addition to boutiques in Japan and Hong Kong, Picasso's accessories are available throughout the United States, Europe, and the Far East. Paloma Picasso creations in Europe also include cosmetics and fragrances for L'Oreal in France, sunglasses and optical frames for a German company, hosiery for Grupo Synkro in Mexico, and bed ensembles, towels, bathrobes, and dressing gowns for KBC in Germany. As in the United States, home design has become a new era of creation for Paloma Picasso, with collections of bone China, crystal, silver, and tiles for Villeroy & Boch and fabrics and wall coverings for Motif.