World war II
Picasso, unlike many artists, stayed in Paris during the German occupation of World War II. Some of his paintings from this time reveal the anxiety of the war years, as does the menacing Still Life with Steer's Skull (1942, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf, Germany). Other works, such as his sculpture Head of a Bull (1943, Mus Picasso), are more playful and whimsical. In this sculpture Picasso combined a bicycle seat and handlebars to epresent the bull's head. Upon receiving news of the Nazi death camps, Picasso also painted, although he did not finish, an homage to the victims of the Holocaust (mass murder of European Jews during the war). In this painting, called The Charnel House (1945, Museum of Modern Art), he restricted the color scheme to black and white (as in Guernica) and depicted an accumulation of distorted, mangled bodies. During the war Picasso joined the Communist Party, and after the war he attended several peace conferences.