Art: Picasso, R. A.?

Forty years ago, when crusty Augustus John first saw the works of young Pablo Picasso, he was "at once struck by his unusual gifts." Since then, John, 73, has become Britain's leading academic portraitist; Picasso, 70, the most brilliant and controversial figure in modern art. This week, writing in London's Sunday Times, Augustus John brought his original impression up to date:

"Omnivorous and insatiable, [Picasso] helps himself, without scruple, from every pot in turn. Such are his abnormal digestive powers, that after only partial mastication, he will regurgitate each exotic titbit in a form but slightly distorted in the process ... A...

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