Beyond Cubism: Pablo Picasso's Influence on Pop Art | By Kerwin Blog

Beyond Cubism: Pablo Picasso’s Influence on Pop Art

Exploring the similarities between these two styles of art – with the help of Artificial Intelligence!

If you are reading this article, then you are probably familiar with Pablo Picasso. The Spanish painter revolutionised the art world and created history in the early 20th century with his invention of Cubism. Cubism was a new art form that completely modernised the art of visual language. But Picasso’s influence on art was not just limited to Cubism.

Picasso also profoundly influenced Pop Art with his groundbreaking painting style that challenged conventional norms and upended artistic conventions by blending multiple perspectives into a single image. This blog post looks at how some of the key artists of the Pop Art movement have drawn influence from Picasso’s Cubist aesthetic and infused Cubist elements within their own Pop Art styles.

Picasso and Cubism influenced Pop Art by challenging traditional artistic norms. This included inspiring Pop Art’s use of bold colours, incorporating popular culture and media, experimenting with materials, and encouraging the exploration of multiple viewpoints and perspectives in art.

As a UK pop artist who paints portraits of music’s biggest icons in my unique Jackson Pollock-inspired style, I explore below how Picasso’s work paved the way for the iconic imagery now associated with popular culture.

A brief introduction to Picasso and Cubism

Pablo Picasso is an artist that had some of the biggest influences on art in the 20th century. His impact on the art world can be attributed to his innovative art movement, which is known as Cubism. It all started in 1907 in France, and one reason for this was the rapid changing of the world at the beginning of the 20th century.

The inventions, scientific discoveries, and the art world of the time seemed rather conventional and rigid. Artists such as Picasso decided to take a revolutionary approach to their art and the depiction of their subjects. Picasso and his friend Georges Braque began experimenting with cubist techniques, quickly gaining widespread attention.

Pablo Picasso

Cubism revolutionised how art was perceived and created by breaking down objects into geometric shapes and rearranging them non-representatively. For several hundred years up until the turn of the 20th century, painting had been used to depict images and objects as they were, in their realistic and proportional senses. Cubism challenged society’s traditional notions of realism and perspective and opened up new avenues for artistic expression.

Picasso’s bold use of colour and form and his willingness to push artistic boundaries paved the way for future artists. Cubism remains a significant and revered art movement, and Picasso’s contributions continue to inspire and influence artists from all disciplines.

Was Pop Art influenced by Cubism? How did Picasso impact some of the key artists of the Pop Art movement?

Picasso and Cubism influenced Pop Art by challenging traditional artistic norms. This included inspiring Pop Art’s use of bold colours, incorporating popular culture and media, experimenting with materials, and encouraging the exploration of multiple viewpoints and perspectives in art.

Pop Art is a genre that emerged in the mid-20th century and became influential in the art world. In its brief history, Pop Art was a movement that started in Great Britain and the United States. In Britain, a group of young artists who claimed themselves as an independent group had a meeting at the Institute of Contemporary Art of London, and they discussed mass culture and its inclusion in art. From there, Pop Art started to expand.

Much of the Pop Art movement is attributed to developments in the U.S. during the 1950s and 1960s, as artists such as Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein pioneered their radical approaches to artistic styles and subject matter.

Pop Art generally is known for incorporating popular subjects within the artwork. When it comes to what influenced the Pop Art movement, Cubism is considered to be an important predecessor. The artists from Cubism had a profound impact on some of the major Pop Art works.

Did Picasso influence Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein?

Pablo Picasso has left an inescapable mark on the world of art. Even modern-day artists who seek to create something unique in the art world often draw inspiration from Picasso’s works. It’s no secret that this mastermind of art influenced Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein. They followed in his footsteps by adding their distinctive style to create something new. Picasso’s influence on these two most popular Pop Art icons is undeniable and is often found in their work.

Picasso’s simplified forms may have influenced Lichtenstein’s comic book-style portraits. Meanwhile, perhaps Picasso’s multiple perspectives inspired Warhol’s technique of using repeated images – such as in his iconic Campbell’s Soup Cans painting.

Read my in-depth exploration of Roy Lichtenstein and his iconic Pop Art style here.

Imagining Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein in a Picasso Cubism style – using artificial intelligence!

To further consider the similarities and possible influences of Picasso’s Cubism on two of Pop Art’s key artists, I asked artificial intelligence (AI) to produce some interpretations of Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein’s art in a Cubist style. Some of the results are below, including a Lichtenstein comic book-style face and some reproductions of Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans. What do you think? (By the way, the ability of AI to even be able to produce these images is crazy and surely daunting for the future of digital artists – I’m glad all of my By Kerwin paintings are entirely hand-drawn and hand-painted!

Did Picasso do Pop Art?

Pablo Picasso is frequently linked to the Cubist art movement. However, many may wonder if he also contributed to the development of pop art. Although Picasso was not considered a pop artist, his final period featured portrait elements of pop art, such as the use of bold colours and imagery from everyday life.

For example, the series of prints he created for the book “Le Cocu Magnifique” in 1969 featured cartoon-like drawings of characters and objects. Picasso’s experimentation with Pop Art may have influenced other movements and artists, but his unique style and contributions to art history remain unmatchable.

Brick Factory at Tortosa by Pablo Picasso
Picasso didn’t do Pop Art himself, but the way he broke his subjects down into their core elements perhaps influenced the later Pop Art movement. Pictured in Brick Factory at Tortosa by Pablo Picasso.

Similarities between Cubism and the Pop Art

After exploring the influence of Cubism on Pop Art, let’s explore some key similarities among them to justify the above-stated arguments. Some similarities between these two art forms include:

  • Looking at their origin, both movements emerged during times of great change and upheaval, with Cubism emerging at the beginning of the 20th century and Pop Art rising to prominence during the 1960s.
  • Both styles are also known for using unconventional techniques, with Cubist artists breaking down subject matter into abstract geometric forms and Pop artists using found imagery and everyday objects in their work.
  • Both Cubism and Pop Art share attributes like fragmentation and multiple perspectives. In fragmentation, the artist creates an image by combining multiple distinct elements. In multiple perspectives, art refers to using different viewpoints or angles when representing a subject or scene.
  • Both movements were highly influential and are credited with changing the course of art history, with Cubism paving the way for other abstract styles and Pop Art challenging the traditional notions of what art could and should be.

Despite their differences in appearance, it’s clear that Cubism and Pop Art share a rebellious spirit and a desire to push artistic boundaries.

How else did Picasso influence the Pop Art movement?

Taking Cubism aside, here are some of the qualities of Picasso’s artwork that profoundly impacted the Pop Art movement:

Use of bold colours

Picasso was known for his bold use of colour and contrasting shades to create striking visual effects. This approach to colour inspired many pop artists to incorporate vibrant colours into their work.

Incorporation of popular culture

Picasso also had the knack of incorporating popular culture and imagery into his art. Some examples include newspaper clippings, advertisements and other media. This practice inspired many pop artists to incorporate mass media and popular imagery into their work similarly.

Experimentation with new materials

Picasso experimented with various materials and techniques throughout his career, including collage and assemblage. The style of pushing the boundaries of traditional art-making techniques inspired many pop artists to experiment with new materials and methods.

Use of multiple viewpoints

In addition to using multiple perspectives in cubist works, Picasso sometimes used multiple viewpoints in non-cubist works. This technique inspired pop artists to experiment with different viewpoints and angles in their work.

Some of these principles, such as the bold colours and striking, contrasting shades, have been incorporated into my own ‘By Kerwin’ style of Pop Art portrait paintings. Explore my full range of music icons and shop prints at

Did you know: I share a birthday with Pablo Picasso – 25th October (although he was born in 1881, over a century before me)


Pablo Picasso’s influence on Pop Art extends beyond his role in the Cubist movement. His revolutionary approach to art, bold use of colour, incorporation of popular culture, experimentation with materials, and use of multiple viewpoints inspired and influenced key artists of the Pop Art movement. Artists like Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein drew inspiration from Picasso’s innovative techniques and incorporated them into their own iconic works.

While Picasso himself is not considered a pop artist, his exploration of elements aligned with Pop Art in his later period further demonstrates his impact on the movement. The similarities between Cubism and Pop Art, such as their unconventional techniques, influence during times of social change, and challenge to artistic conventions, further solidify the connection between these art forms.

Picasso’s lasting legacy and his contributions to the art world continue to inspire artists and shape the artistic landscape, making him an enduring influence on Pop Art and beyond.

Do you prefer Cubism or Pop Art? Explore my range of Pop Art-style music icon paintings and prints in my online shop – where you can purchase your favourite from £35

Explore more of my blog posts Pop Art here. Let me know what other art topics you’d like to read about!

View my full range of Jackson Pollock-inspired pop art paintings and prints of your favourite music and pop culture icons at High-definition printing, fast worldwide delivery and satisfaction guaranteed. You can follow my art progress on Instagram and Facebook.

Kerwin Blackburn exhibiting his pop art, Jackson Pollock-inspired music paintings and prints at The Other Art Fair London, October 2021 | By Kerwin
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