Robert Delaunay

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Self-Portrait, 1905-1906.

Robert Delaunay (b. París, 1885 - d. Montpellier, 1947) was a French painter. He started painting in 1903 and by 1904 Delaunay was exhibiting (at the Salon "d'Automne"); he also exhibited at the "Salon des Indépendants". In 1912, he painted his first abstract works, his first "Disc" and "Circular Forms". That year was a turning point for Delaunay, commonly labeled a Cubist; The poet and Art Critic Guillaume Apollinaire praised his works of the exhibition at the Galerie Barbazanges and proclaimed Delaunay as “an artist who has a monumental vision of the world.” 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. Guillaume Apollinaire coined their new style "Orphism"... 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. [1] Between 1914 and 1920, Delaunay lived in Spain and Portugal and became friend of Diego Rivera.

Delaunay's works can be found in museums like: The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Musée National d'Art Moderne in Paris, the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, and the National Gallery of Art in Washington.

Robert Delaunay’s critical role in establishing a fully abstract idiom immediately before World War I continues to assure for him an important place in 20th-century art, however much his reputation remains overshadowed by that of his contemporaries, such as Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque and Henri Matisse.[2]

Delaunay Simultaneous Contrasts-Sun and Moon.jpg

Simultaneous Contrasts-Sun and Moon, 1912-13.

Delaunay Endless Rhythm 1934.jpg

Endless Rhythm 1934.

But what is of great importance to me is observation of the movement of colors.

Light in Nature creates the movement of colors.

See also

Circular Forms, 1930.

External links

Man with a Tulip (known as Portrait of Jean Metzinger), 1906.

Le Premier Disque, 1912-1913.


  1. About Robert Delaunay.
  2. Oxford University Press The Museum of Modern Art ("MoMA").