Tamara de Lempicka was one of the most celebrated, and notorious art deco artists. Born in Poland in 1898 she lived in Russia before escaping the Russian Revolution to settle in Paris in the late 1917. Once installed she embarked on a series of paintings that guaranteed her a place in the glamorous society of 1920s Europe and America.
The Roaring Twenties
Independently wealthy, consumerist and free thinking de Lempicka painted herself and her environment. Art deco’s bold stylings had grown out of the flowing lines of Art Nouveau but they reflected a more cynical, technological and industrial post-First World War society.
De Lempicka’s bold art relected the similarly bold shapes of the trains and the buildings, the pavilions and the cars that surrounded her. One of her most famous paintings is Self Portrait of 1925 depicting her lofty self-possession as she dominates her stylish Bugatti and drives distainfully close to the viewer.
Young Girl in Green
Young Girl in Green too is typical of de Lempicka’s work, with it’s stylized forms and bright colours. The strong central figure, dominating the canvas as ever, is set against the sort of angular art deco buildings that the rich, glamorous set of the roaring twenties lived in and around. Indeed, it’s subject is de Lempicka’s daughter Kisette, who, unlike the fast cars and fast parties was said to be much neglected by her mother.
Art Deco Style
De Lempicka’s wild social life did not interfere with her skill as an artist. Her skill and originality allowed her to absorb the cubist and modernist influences of the avant-garde with the bright, mechanistic forces of technological change. Her methods were a unique combination of glamour and colour, she has become one of the great art deco artists and certainly one of the most influential female artists of the 20th century. Her work is admired still today and she remains one of the most popular artists online for prints and posters.
The offical site of the estate of Tamara de Lempicka is here.
A fantastic Pinterest Board with her paintings here.
An excellent museum with further information about the artist here.