Sonia Delaunay: Studies in Abstraction & Color
 (Biographical information edited and adapted from Wikipedia)

Sonia Delaunay (1885-1979, photo left) was born in the Ukraine, and later emigrated to Paris. She studied art at the Académie de La Palette in Montparnasse. However, it is said that she gained a deep appreciation of art and was able to explore the art movements of her time by visiting innumerable galleries in Paris. She married the French artist Robert Delaunay in 1910. Sonia is quoted as saying: "In Robert Delaunay I found a poet. A poet who wrote not with words but with colors."

The art movement called "modernism" in the early 20th century included a wide variety of creative explorations into the possibilities of abstract art. The type of abstraction found in Sonia Delalnay's work has a special name because of it's profound centering on dynamic color combinations. It was referred to as Orphism at a time when Cubism was centered on monochrome compositions. There is no clear explanation of why the name, except that Orpheus was a Greek god with musical charms. Music has a rapture that color has also, and certainly adds more passion to any abstract composition.

There are a few exceptions here — "Sleeping Girl" or "Ballet for the Four Seasons," but most of the titles, as regards the subject matter of Sonia Delaunay's work, simply refer to the painting's assembly of abstract or geometric forms, for instance, terms such as "composition," or "rhythm," also "mosaic," "pattern," or "color," as part of the title.

Compare at this site with studies on other modernist, women artists, including NATURAL ABSTRACTION by Georgia O'Keeffe (1887-1986), the ROCKING CHAIR with Mary Fedden (1915-2012) and Sophie Taeuber-Arp's DADA.

Illustration above, Sonia Delaunay's "Finistere," 1967
Click thumbnails to enlarge images.
Rest cursor on thumbnails to see composition dates (1907 to 1973)

Composition 13

Sleelping Girl
Crepe de Chine


Compositions, Colors, Ideas

Pattern in Silk

Electric Prisms


Composition 22

Decoration Project


Compositions 31

Rhythme Coloré

Ideas #17



Composition No. 2

Composition 10

Prisms Electric

Color Rhythms

Composition No. 11


Four Seasons, Summer


Composition 29


Colored Rhythm

Composition, Color, Ideas

Syncopated Rhythm

Jack of Spades

Portuguese Market

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