Watercolor on paper
38,5 x 28,5 cm / 15,1 x 11,2 in
Signed upper right: Marie Laurencin
Paris 1883 - Paris 1956
Marie Laurencin was a figurative painter, born in 1883 in Paris. At first intended to be a teacher, at a time when women only just began to emancipate, she became interested by the porcelain painting she learned at the Ecole de Sèvres and attended the class of Eugène Quignolot. In 1902, she enrolled the Académie Humbert with Francis Picabia, Georges Lepape and Georges Braque. The latter introduced her to Pierre Roché in spring 1906, collector of Picasso who became his friend and patron. He introduced her to the Symbolist circle and in 1907, Clovis Sagot organized her first exhibition. Picasso discovered her at that moment and introduced her to André Derain, Robert Delaunay, Kees Van Dongen and the douanier Rousseau who portrayed her alongside Guillaume Apollinaire. The same year she exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants.
During the years of her common-life with Apollinaire, she dabbled with poetry and they mutually inspire each other. Seduced by the imaginary world and the girls of Marie Laurencin, the art dealer Wilhelm Uhde organized a second exhibition where he negociated a record sale, making her famous in Paris. When the Cubist emancipation, she prefered to develop her own style, recognizable at first glance. She exhibited with Duchamp at the Section d'Or and at the Armory Show.
During the Années folles, Marie Laurencin had a real success, becoming a renowned portraitist. Coco Chanel commissioned her and also Misia Sert or Alice Cocéa. Although never fundamentally feminist, Marie Laurencin was propelled to the front scene and became the symbol of women of this beginning of the XXth century. She indeed launched the renewal of the Salon des Femmes Artistes Modernes and was on Vogue cover in April 1931. In 1937, 16 paintings were exhibited at the Universal Exhibition.
After a long and tumultuous life, marked with love affairs and artistic adventures, Marie Laurencin died from a heart attack in Paris. She left behind an incredible and abundant production, symbol of the times and artistics movements she got through. Her relationships and friendships with the most famous artists of her time made Marie Laurencin the muse of the great names of Modern art.