Color Moves: Art and Fashion by Sonia Delaunay

Another fantastic example of art and fashion intertwined is the work of Sonia Delaunay.

There is a league of talented female artists out there who are constantly overshadowed by their famous spouses and Delaunay was one of them. Believe it or not, some considered Frida Kahlo as one too. And as with Kahlo, Delaunay’s life was just as colourful.

Let’s just say she met an art dealer and married him. Turned out that he’s gay and she remarried, this time to her neighbour. She was friends with Picasso, Braque, and Vlaminck and with her painter husband, Robert Delaunay, the couple embarked on a “simultaneity” journey. Together, they worked on their theory of “simultaneity”; the sensation of movement and rhythm created by the simultaneous contrasts of certain colours. 

When times were bad, Delaunay designed fabrics, tapestries and carpets to earn a living. She collaborated with couturiers such as Coco Chanel, Jeanne Lanvin and Jacques Heim. Her clients included a number of celebrities and film stars as well.

There will be an exhibition later this year featuring Delaunay’s designs for textiles and fashion in the 1920s through the 1940s, illustrating her experimentation with fabrics and contemporary art, in particular movement and colour. Exhibits include garments, textiles, fashion illustrations, and period photographs.

Largely known as an abstract painter, Delaunay applied her talent to different forms of art throughout her career; they included graphics, theatre, film, fashion and textiles.

During the 1920s, Delaunay has her own Simultaneous Boutique in Paris where she exhibited garments that were extensions of her painting practice. The designs feature geometric forms in rhythmic patterns and vivid colours.

During the 1930s, Delaunay designed textiles for the fashionable Metz & Co department store in Amsterdam. The Metz & Co collection will show Delaunay’s design process, from the initial sketch to the finished product, as she developed her technical skills as a textile designer.

Titled Color Moves: Art and Fashion by Sonia Delaunay, the exhibition seems to be a comprehensive showcase of her artistic career. The  event will be held on:
18 March to 5 June 2011
Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum
2 East 91st Street
New York, NY 10128

Can’t wait for gallery shots!

X Sybil

(Images from The Art of Fred Martin)

About fashionartisan
Bringing out the art in fashion

2 Responses to Color Moves: Art and Fashion by Sonia Delaunay

  1. Mark says:

    Hey Guys,
    Love the Blog keep up the good work
    Just a side note that cape is a Pucci design from about 1964.
    http://home.emiliopucci.com/pucci-then-now/then/then-02
    Mark St. James
    Marquis of Fashion

  2. Thanks, Mark!
    We’ll remove the image. No wonder it looked so familiar!

    X Alex & Sybil

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