Sonia Delaunay–Terk (Gradizhsk, November 14, 1885 - Paris, December 5, 1979) was a Ukrainian–French artist who married Robert Delaunay. Her oeuvre includes jewellery, paintings, textile designs
and scene designs.
Sarah Ilinitchna Stern was born in Gradizhsk and is of Jewish descent. For reasons unknown, she moved to St. Petersburg, where her uncle Henri Terk, a wealthy lawyer, lived. In 1890 she was adopted by the Terk's family and changed her name to Sonia Terk. From the age of eighteen she studied in Karlsruhe (1903 - 1904) and, in 1905, at the Academy de la Palette in Paris. In this period Sonia was influenced by the Post Impressionists and Fauvists. On a small scale, she enjoyed a certain name.
In 1908, she married Wilhelm Uhde, an art dealer who was homosexual. It was probably a marriage of convenience. In 1909 she met the painter Robert Delaunay, with whom she had a love affair. Uhde agreed to divorce, and in 1910 Sonia and Robert married. Their son Charles Delaunay was born in 1911. During the First World War they stayed in Portugal and Spain. When her income fell due to the Russian Revolution, Sonia began designing clothes, fabrics and theatre costumes, which proved to be a business success. In these years she almost completely stopped painting. In the crisis years she closed her business, and started painting again, but also continued to sell her designs.
At the beginning of the twentieth century there was hardly any cooperation between the fashion world and artists. Sonia Delaunay was an exception. Together with her husband Robert Delaunay she developed the ‘simultanisme’. This was a colour theory based on scientific research, which showed that some colours next to each other seem to result in a different colour or that the combination of colours can cause a semblance of movement. This made the couple work with contrasting and dissonant colours.
In her work, Delaunay made great use of bright colours. Russian folk art inspired her to do so. The colours of ‘simultanism’ were innovative.
Delaunay was also inspired by the prism or street lighting. In her life she has experimented with many styles, including orphism, cubism and abstract art. In 1931 she joined the abstraction-création group. Until his death in 1941, she painted with Robert. Delaunay maintained friendly relations with the Dadaist artist Tristan Tzara. He wrote poems about her simultaneous work and she made drawings for two of his books. She was the first female artist to be honoured during her lifetime with a retrospective at the Louvre. In 1964 she became a Knight of the French Legion of Honour and in 1975 Officer in this same order.
Origin: Purchased from Sotheby's in London on 24 March 1999, since then in private ownership with the current owner.
Frame: Framed by Monart in 's Hertogenbosch. A wooden frame, covered with gold-leaf, with museum glass in a mat.
Signed: in the lower right.
- Sonia Delaunay (1885-1979)
- Titre de l'œuvre d'art
- Rhytme colore no. 822
- Signé à la main
- Bon état
- Dimensions totales
- 59×53×4 cm