Mesmerized by… Tamara de Lempicka pickings

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If I could buy a painting or two today, I’d definitely settle for a Tamara de Lempicka (1898-1980).

Autoportrait Tamara in Green Bugatti. 1925.
Autoportrait Tamara in Green Bugatti. 1925.

Her oils are sensuous, fluid, flamboyant. As I skim through a catalogue of images during my 2 hour train ride this morning, I am rendered anew.

Her notion of the female image subverts the mundane. Hues are vibrant and nubile limbs are clothed in opulent gowns and dashing Art Deco cuts. They call her style soft cubism, I’m hardly suprised, what with all that flesh. She really makes you want to wear silk lingerie and saunter about the house strumming a mandoline, but not at all in a Holly Golightly sort of way. Oh no, Tamara de Lempicka would eat Golightly.

La Musicienne. Tamara de Lempicka. 1929.
La Musicienne. Tamara de Lempicka. 1929.

Known for her voracious appetite,  and I don’t mean for food, de Lempicka was a queen of the Roaring Twenties Paris set.

Saint Moritz. de Lempicka. 1929.
Saint Moritz. de Lempicka. 1929.

There is one book I am particularly eager to read that is an exposé into the life of de Lempicka, the woman and artist- Tamara de Lempicka: A Life of Deco and Decadence.

image

It’s reportedly riveting. How could it not be when it’s main subject enjoyed life amongst the Russian aristocracy, partied in Paris in the twenties with Picasso and died in Mexico in the 1980’s.

Portrait of a Man, or Mr Tadeusz de Lempicka
Portrait of a Man, or Mr Tadeusz de Lempicka

On her own paintings she has said;

Among a hundred paintings, you could recognize mine, my goal was: Do not copy. Create a new style, … colors light and bright, return to elegance in my models.

At the Opera. de Lempicka. 1941.
At the Opera. de Lempicka. 1941.

Hardly the wallflower she epitomizes the Art Deco Femme fatale.

I liked to go out in the evenings and have a good-looking man tell me how beautiful I am or how great an artist I am.

Tamara de Lempicka
Tamara de Lempicka
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