Robert Delaunay
French, 1885-1941
Collected by major museums
Tate, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Selected exhibitions
Windows on the City: The School of Paris, 1900–1945,
Guggenheim Museum Bilbao
East Building Permanent Collection,
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
Jane Kahan Gallery at Palm Springs Fine Art Fair 2015,
Jane Kahan Gallery

With his embrace of color contrasts and abstraction, Robert Delaunay pioneered the transition from Cubism to lyrical abstraction along with his wife Sonia Delaunay and Frantisek Kupka. The poet Guillaume Apollinaire coined their new style Orphism, in reference to the mythological figure Orpheus. Taking the fragmented Cubist forms as his starting point, Delaunay imbued his work with Fauvist and Neo-Impressionist-inspired color to create a sense of dynamism that appealed to the senses. His first “Eiffel Tower” series (1910-12) exemplifies what Delaunay referred to as his destructive phase, an exploration of the potential of light to disintegrate a solid structure. He became one of the earliest completely non-representational painters with his “Windows” (1912) and “Colored Discs” (1913) series. Orphism greatly influenced the Munich-based group of painters known as Der Blaue Reiter (The …

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