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Laura Seitz, Deseret News
Katy Corneli, left, Ryan Lynch and Silvia Gonzales hang Pablo Picasso's "Woman With a Cape" at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts.

In the continued preparation for its upcoming major exhibition, "Monet to Picasso From the Cleveland Museum of Art," on display from June 23 through Sept. 21, the Utah Museum of Fine Arts recently uncrated one of the show's 74 masterpieces: "Woman With a Cape (Jeanneton), 1901" (oil on canvas) by Pablo Picasso.

"The artist painted the work when he was just 19," said Jill Dawsey, UMFA curator of modern and contemporary art. According to Dawsey, the painting demonstrates Picasso's already prodigious skill.

Painting conservator Marcia Steele of the Cleveland Museum of Art was on hand to examine the painting when it was removed from the protective shipping crate.

"I check it before it leaves the previous venue and then check it again when it arrives at the next exhibition destination," Steele said.

After the meticulous examination, assistants gingerly moved the Picasso to the wall it would occupy for the next few months.

"This will be our first major ticket show," said David Dee, director of the UMFA. Dee also stated that the museum was only one of four in the country to have the honor. "The only one in the West," he said.

As part of the exhibition's opening gala, the UMFA will host "Soiree d'Art," a fundraiser offering excellent art, French cuisine and Cabaret entertainment on Saturday evening from 6-9. The event includes an exhibition preview and a live auction of Utah art.

Ticket prices are $200 per person ($125 of each ticket is tax deductible), and only 500 tickets will be sold. Interested parties should contact Erin Koelliker at 585-9880 or erin.koelliker@umfa.utah.edu for more information.

Summer formal or French costume wear required. For more information visit www.umfa.utah.edu.

E-mail: gag@desnews.com