October 31, 2013

Pretty, dreamy Marie (Laurencin)

It's been some time since I have written about great women artists and it is time. Most have not heard of Marie Laurencin, but she sure had some famous friends. Like Mademoiselle Chanel.

Marie Laurencin - Portrait of Mademoiselle Chanel, 1923 Source

Marie was born in Paris and studied porcelain painting before falling in with hip cats of the day: Braque, Picasso, Gris, Apollinaire. Were these artists aware that they were to become something significant? Did they instinctively seek each other out? Were any perfectly ordinary friends among them now lost to history?

Marie Laurencin, Group of Artists (1908). Image via Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris.

Marie was there when crazy notion of cubism cane about. A few of her pieces have a whisper of cubist lines and sober colors. But mostly Maurie Laurencin stuck with what she did best, lovely, effervescent, with the same cast of languid girls. 

Marie Laurencin - Les jeunes filles - Moderna Museet, Stockholm

Why isn't Marie Laurencin's name known worldwide like the names of her posse? Was she too much of a one-note?  Is her art just too pretty, lightweight, lacking the grit that would make it important? Perhaps it is all those things, pleasant and superficial. 

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