If I could have my portrait painted by any artist in history, I think Tamara de Lempicka (1898-1980) would be very high on my shortlist.
|Portrait de Madame Allan Bott (source)|
I've been obsessing over the above painting in particular recently. Beyond finding her painting style fabulous, I love the sitter in this picture - her pose, her dress, her makeup - and I love the background of the dark city. It's so incredibly beautiful.
A lot of people are probably familiar with her famous self-portrait...
... but perhaps know her other work less well. Let me share some of my other favourites I came across.
|La Dormeuse (1932)|
|Young Lady with Gloves (1930)|
|The Girls (c.1930)|
I love the way she paints curls in those pictures above, don't you? Like beautiful, silky ribbons.
|Saint Moritz (1929)|
|Blue Scarf (1930)|
|Calla Lillies (1931)|
She looked pretty fabulous herself too...
...had a beautiful studio...
...and had an appropriately jazz age lifestyle. Born into a wealthy family in Poland, boarding school in Switzerland, to Italy and the French Riveria at a young age, parents divorced when she was 12, went to live with her aunt in St Petersburg. Her husband arrested by the Bolsheviks during the Russian Revolution, she secured his release and they ended up in Paris via Copenhagen and London. In France, she became part of the bohemian set in 1920s Paris, where she had affairs with men and women alike. She had a daughter who she painted often but neglected due to her obsession with her art and her debauched lifestyle. Etc, etc, etc.
But most importantly, what an amazing artist.