DELAUNAY Sonia

Sonia Delaunay, born Sara Illinitchna Stern, was a Ukrainian painter born in Gradzihsk on November 14, 1885. Born into a modest family, she was adopted at the age of 5 by her uncle Terk, a lawyer from St. Petersburg. The young girl grew up in a well-to-do environment where she learned French and German and discovered Impressionism during her holidays in Finland. She moved to Paris in 1905, where Fauvist and post-impressionist movements inspired her first paintings, including “Philom√®ne” (1907).

Her first marriage to Wilhelm Uhde in 1908 brought her into influential literary and artistic circles, where she met the man who became her second husband in November 1909: Robert Delaunay. Their son Charles is born on January 18, 1910. Sonia and Robert Delaunay developed together their own pictorial current, Orphism, an abstract movement born of Cubism and characterised by the association of very bright colours and the geometric forms of Cubism. Sonia has created hundreds of artworks, includings paintings, sculptures, lithographs and etchings.

She died on 5 December 1979 in Paris at the age of 94, after having donated all her graphic works to the Centre Pompidou three years earlier.