Imagine Picasso

a new type of immersive exhibition

Imagine Picasso takes visitors into a journey through the revolutionary career of the most influential and popular artist of the 20th century, Pablo Picasso. This art experience offers a unique look into the evolution of this prolific artist, from the evocative images of his Blue and Rose periods to his masterpieces in the Cubism and Surrealism movements, and to the diverse and unique output of his mature years. This immersive exhibition licensed by the Picasso Administration presents more than 200 Picasso’s paintings shown together for the first time, many of which hail from private collections and prestigious museum around the world.

The exhibition is the result of a meeting between Annabelle Mauger and Rudy Ricciotti, Grand Prix National d’architecture, both fascinated by Picasso. Together, with Julien Baron, they imagined a spectacular scenography, inspired by Picasso’s tender gaze on childhood. The paintings are projected onto huge origami structures, walls and floor, to deconstruct and restructure the work of the Master of Modern Art. The Imagine Picasso experience is enhanced by a carefully selected musical soundtrack.

“This exhibition offers not only an educational experience, but also a moving form of presentation that allows visitors to see art with fresh eyes,” says Androula Michael, the exhibition curator and art historian specialized in Picasso. “The main goal of this immersive exhibition is to create a space that is accessible to everyone, regardless of age, language and culture, to encourage emotions, dreams and contemplation, even in the youngest visitors.”


The artistic approach in Image Totale©, designed by Annabelle Mauger and Julien Baron, immerses the viewer in the heart of the paintings to explore the details. More than 200 of Picasso’s works are projected in Image Totale ©. Plunged into darkness, visitors are immersed in the creative universe of Picasso in a way never seen before, allowing them to explore the paintings’ details and experience the impressive power of Picasso’s work. Free to choose their own path, visitors become participants, who can take as long as they like to gaze in any direction and immerse themselves in Picasso’s work. Everyone experiences the exhibition in a different way.

The projection is accompanied by music from Picasso’s contemporaries, Satie and Ravel, and contemporary composers. The music enhances the immersive experience and adds a new dimension that opens the way for dreaming and contemplation.



“I think this exhibition would have pleased my grandfather a lot
because he was, above all, a man of freedom.”

Olivier Widmaier Picasso, grandson of Pablo Picasso about the Imagine Picasso exhibition.

Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) embodies the Modern Art Master: constantly reinventing himself, he revolutionized the forms and the academic aesthetics through several art mediums. An impressive 78-year career of the most prolific creative genius of all-times: he produced an average of 120,000 artworks – including paintings, drawings, prints, sculptures and ceramics.
Eminently notorious, Picasso is more than a household name in the West, he is the only artist whose name became a world-widely famous brand.

Pablo Picasso manipulant un modèle à Mougins (1964) ©Carl Nesjar, Adagp, Paris



The Image Totale © is the original concept behind immersive exhibitions, a French savoir-faire invented by Albert Plécy in 1977 and developed today by his granddaughter-in-law Annabelle Mauger and Julien Baron.
In 1977, the journalist and photographer Albert Plécy invented the concept of Image Totale ©, which immerses the spectators to the point that they can walk inside the image. Plécy aimed to achieve a method of “total vision” that completely immersed the viewer. With this in mind, this visionary artist founded Cathédrale d’Images in Les Baux-de-Provence where the original concept of total immersion was conceived and displayed for the first time.
‘Imagine Picasso’ invites visitors to literally enter into Picasso’s world and works.

©Encore Productions – Laurence Labat

The Image Totale © technology brings a whole new dimension to the concept of art exhibition and revolutionizes the encounter between artists/artworks and audiences.

The warping techniques used for ‘Imagine Picasso’ adapt the surface to the projected image, thus respecting the latter’s integrity to magnify the artworks, whereas more basic mapping techniques focus on adapting the image to the surface. Warping consists in perfectly adjusting the projected work to the scenographic surface. This technique frees the work from the gravitational subjection that befalls any earthly object. The choice of images, the way they are positioned, their rhythm and their association with the music all compose this original creation conceived by Annabelle Mauger and Julien Baron.



Today, this exhibition could simply not happen since the skyrocketing prices that the works have reached would directly impact insurance and transportation costs. The paintings projected in Imagine Picasso are issued from prestigious museum collections such as the Musée Picasso in Paris, the Museu Picasso Barcelona, the MoMa in New York, the Pushkin Museum in Moscow and from private collections. An impressive selection impossible to gather physically at the same place at the same time.

Picasso is the only modern artist whose works are classified as national treasures and forbidden to tour and loaned eg Les Demoiselles d’Avignon (1907), Guernica (1937). These works are considered masterpieces akin to Leonardo Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.



Inspired by the paper sculptures Picasso made for his children, Ricciotti and Mauger rematerialize Picasso’s art, giving unprecedented monumentality for an augmented emotion.
In ‘Imagine Picasso’, Ricciotti’s modules are the surface used for the projections of the artworks: each image is projected on 5 full-blown Origami-style volumes, thus sculpted in a way directly inspired by Picasso’s own multi-directional rebel lines.
The modules are scattered in a spectacular scenography promoting oblique lines reaching up to 7 meters high.

Pablo Picasso hantiert an einem Modell in Mougins (1964) ©Carl Nesjar, Adagp, Paris



Annabelle Mauger endeavors, first and foremost, to respect the integrity of the original paintings. Her composition of Picasso’s artworks unfolds a scattering of iconographic details that create a giant puzzle for the audience to reassemble. In this show, respecting the paintings’ images is paramount and strict colorimetry measures are observed in the rendering of the works that convey a sense of absolute clarity as the vision expands. The viewer can thus see the painting strokes from up-close.



The educational gallery was conceived by Annabelle Mauger in collaboration with art historian Androula Michael. In an innovative display, this section aims to acquaint visitors with Picasso’s oeuvre and Rudy Ricciotti’s work while providing background insight on Cathédrale d’Images and the Image Totale© exhibitions originally designed by Albert Plécy in Baux-de-Provence from 1977 to 2011. Images of the artworks projected in the exhibition are showcased along with short explanatory texts.