Guernica's History Essay

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Guernica's History

The word art is an encompassing one, vastly interpreted and with multiple definitions. In the case of Picasso's painting Guernica, art informs, educates and expresses. Its power lies in its ability to capture and compel an audience nearly six decades after the modern world's "other" day of infamy. To understand fully the painting that evolved out of the Spanish painter's outrage, one must know its context. "Why do you think I date everything I do? Because it is not sufficient to know an artist's works--it is also necessary to know when he did them, why, under what circumstances" (Picasso). An appreciator who knows the saga of Spain's historical fishing village is given a depth of experience that only a genius like
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The apparent goal of the assault was hitting a bridge near an important road junction that possibly could be used in the future by Republican forces. Given that the intent was only to hit the bridge, Von Richthofen would have used his Stuka dive bombers, capable of carrying a single bomb weighing 1,000 pounds. Equipped with the latest bomb sights, a Stuka had a high chance of taking out the bridge with one direct hit. Even a near miss would have made a powerful shock wave that, if it did not cause the bridge the bridge to collapse, would doubtless have made it unsafe for traffic (Gordon, Morgan 1975).

The Condor Legion had had many successful missions to prove their accuracy. For example, they succeeded in dropping provisions squarely into the courtyard of the besieged Nationalist city of Alcazar. For the Guernica mission the Condor Legion was equipped with airplanes consisting of three German types, Junkers and Heinkel bombers and Heinkel fighters which were loaded with 3,ooo pounds of bombs weighing up to 550 pounds each along with more than 3,ooo two-pounder aluminum incendiary projectiles (Fisch 1983).

From 4:30 to 7:45 in the evening the squadron poured an uncontested, continuous rain of bombs and gun fire on Guernica. Normal procedure would have been to observe the fall of
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