My sister and I have always loved Sonia Delaunay. Her abstract and colourful compositions are gorgeous. We have a book full of Sonia Delaunay's abstract lithographs – the kids have looked at it many times, picking out the colours and different shapes.
A little bit about Sonia Delaunay: She was born in the Ukraine in 1885, grew up in St Petersburg, Russia, moved to Paris as an adult and stayed there until she died in 1979. Delaunay co-founded the French avant-garde movement Orphism. She was also the first living female artist to have a retrospective art exhibition at the Lourvre. Quite an achievement! She was an artist and designer ahead of her time, she started mixing art with fashion and designed the most wonderful geometric patterned fabrics. I often see contemporary fabric designs that are strikingingly reminscent of her work created back in the 1920s.
|Delaunay's work l-r: Petit rythme couleur 1972, Swimsuit design 1929, Affreux jojo 1969|
The latest Kids Get Arty presented the perfect opportunity to have a Sonia Delaunay inspired painting session.... and it was all about shapes. I pulled out as many foam shapes as I could find, we already had circles, rectangles, stars, flowers and some foam rollers. For a few extra shapes I cut up cheap sponges to make arches and semi-circles. Generous dollops of bright paint were applied to plastic takeaway lids which made great surfaces for the foam sponges to soak up the paint.
I did not supply any paint brushes and the kids didn't miss them. They really enjoyed painting with the sponges and I was impressed with the choice of colour and shapes.... but most importantly it was a fun afternoon creating for the sake of creating.
|Sonia Delaunay inspired foam shape painting|
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