Relief; Rhythms
Date 1932
Medium Oil and plaster on canvas mounted on fiberboard (Masonite)
Dimensions 100.3 x 81 cm
Inventory ID UID 102-156
In 1930, Delaunay returned to abstraction, once again taking up the disc forms that he had abandoned in 1912-1914. His Rythmes, Joie of Vivre [Rhythms, The Joy of Life] show his tremendous mastery. He undertook a study of how painting can be integrated in architecture, within the scope of a limitless universe. His work for Paul Viard's Salon was an opportunity to experiment with his first reliefs. To deal with external atmospheric effects, he experimented with pictorial materials: painted plaster, sand, cement, cork, fibre cement, mosaic, and lacquered stone, among other materials. This particular work shows two small wooden circles in relief. His research, which was formalized by Jean Cassou in ‘Robert Delaunay et la plastique mural en couleurs’ (an article published in Art et Décoration in March 1935), culminated in the large decorative pieces shown at the International Exhibition in Paris in 1937. Although somewhat belatedly, this work perfectly expressed the spirit of orphism: the sun, the moon, and the planets. AC
Acquired at Christie' s, New York, 10 November 1999.