Renowned Art
Marie Laurencin



Marie Laurencin (October 31, 1883–June 8, 1956) was a French painter and printmaker.

Laurencin was born in Paris where she was raised by her mother and lived much of her life. When she was 18 years old, she studied porcelain painting in Sèvres and upon her return to Paris, continued her art education at Académie Humbert. During the period of the First World War, Laurencin left France and went to Spain with her German born husband, Baron Otto von Waëtjen (1914). The couple subsequently lived together briefly in Düsseldorf. After they divorced in 1920, she returned to Paris.

During the early years of the 20th century, Laurencin was an important figure of the Parisian avant-garde. She became romantically involved with the poet Guillaume Apollinaire and has often been remembered as his muse. Laurencin is known as one of the few female Cubist painters, with Sonia Delaunay, Marie Vorobieff, and Franciska Clausen. While her work does show the influence of Pablo Picasso and of her close friend Georges Braque, she developed a unique approach to abstraction which often centered on the representation of groups of women and female portraits. Further, her work lies outside the bounds of the Cubist norms in her pursuit of a specifically feminine aesthetic by her use of pastel colors and curvilinear forms. Laurencin continued to explore themes of femininity and what she considered to be feminine modes of representation until her death. Her works include paintings, watercolors, drawings, and prints.

In 1983, on the one hundredth anniversary of Laurencin's birth, the Musée Marie Laurencin opened in Nagano Prefecture, Japan. The museum is home to more than 500 of her works and an archive.


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