As we visit museums this year I find my eye caught by much that was of less interest to me a few years ago. I still love the Impressionists / post-impressionists and old masters, but my appreciation for a wider variety of paintings and sculpture has expanded.
Sonia Delaunay: modern abstractionist. Not an artist you’d think I’d be interested in. But since seeing her work at the Centre Pompidou in 2011, I’ve wanted to see more of it. This year there is a special retrospective of the work of Sonia Delaunay at the Tate Modern, (http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/ey-exhibition-sonia-delaunay) so we went to it. And I was not disappointed. This retrospective is spectacular. It covers her entire career in all its iterations from expressionist paintings in the early 1900’s through abstractions, textiles, interior design, and art book illustrations. She lived to be 94. She continued to evolve as an artist throughout her life. I do like her earlier expressionist work better than her later abstracts and cubism, but throughout her exploration of simultaneous contrast in color makes all her work come alive.
If you’re interested in learning more about her here are two links, one Wikipedia the other WikiPaintings:
These are a few of her paintings and a photo of one of her dress creations that I particularly like.
Part of my art life is being a member of the Art Gluttons, a group of women artists who have greatly expanded my appreciation of all things art, especially abstract art. In their honour, particularly Becky Knold, Mia Schulte, and Lois Beck, I took a more in depth look as other artists at the Tate Modern including Mark Rothko and Gerhard Richter.
The Rothko Room at the Tate is darkly lit and contains six very large, dark, Rothko paintings, intended to be a place for contemplation. The room was full, but quiet, those who stayed understood his intentions. To learn more see: http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/display/mark-Rothko
Next to the Rothko room is a room with six paintings by Richter. These, too, are intended to be contemplative. The collection is named after Nicolas Cage, whose music Richter listened to whilst painting. The room, as are the paintings, brighter than the Rothko paintings, but the there was the same sense of contemplative viewing by the visitors who were there. http://www.tate.org.uk/gerhard-richter-room-guide/gerhard-richter-room-14
Also of great interest at Tate Modern is a section on the second floor called Poetry and Dream. Here are two images that caught my eye particularly: