Sir John Richardson is best known as Picasso’s biographer but the London Evening Standard sent a reporter to meet with him. The scribe got this whopper:
When I meet the newly knighted 88-year-old at the Ritz shortly before the opening of Tate Britain’s new Picasso exhibition, his principal regret is that he didn’t allow his actual body to be marked by “the greatest artist of the 20th century”.
“Picasso was very cross when I came back from America and I had a new tattoo here,” Richardson gestures to his right arm where a faded mark is visible. “He said: ‘I would have tattooed you!'” […]
Apparently Picasso had always hoped to do a Cubist still life on someone’s back. He was about to do one on Georges Braque in Paris, in fact, but the First World War intervened. It was perhaps Picasso’s preference for the DIY “prison” method (needle, ink, pain) that put Richardson off – “It would have hurt.”
Aside from that, it’s a great read.
Picasso–by the Man Who Knew Him Best (Evening Standard)