Lydia Csato Gasman, Picasso Scholar, Dies at 84

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Lydia Csato Gasman, an art historian known for her groundbreaking scholarship on the work of Picasso, died on Jan. 15 in Charlottesville, Va. She was 84 and lived in Charlottesville.

Her death was confirmed by Larry Goedde, chairman of the McIntire Department of Art at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, where she taught for two decades.

Fluent in several languages and equipped with a formidable memory, Dr. Gasman redefined Picasso studies. Most scholars had either analyzed Picasso’s art purely in terms of formal innovations and aesthetic progress or offered one-dimensional readings of his work in relation to his life story. Dr. Gasman found a middle way.

One of her more sensational achievements was to track down Marie-Thérèse Walter, the great love of Picasso’s life, in the south of France in 1972 and, over a period of several days, to conduct the frankest, most detailed interview about their life together.

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