Robert Delaunay (12 April 1885, Paris – 25 October 1941) was a French artist who used Orphism, which is similar to abstract art, abstraction and cubism in his work. Delaunay concentrated on Orphism, while his later works were more abstract, reminiscent of Paul Klee. His key influence related to bold use of colour, and a clear love of experimentation of both depth and tone.
Sun and Moon
Robert Delaunay was the son of George Delaunay and comtesse Berthe Félicie de Rose. While he was a child, Delaunay's parents divorced, and he was raised by his mother's sister Marie and her husband Charles Damour, in La Ronchère near Bourges. When he failed his final exam and said he wanted to become a painter, his uncle in 1902 sent him to Ronsin's atelier for decorative arts in Belleville. Aged 19 he left Ronsin to focus entirely on painting and contributed six works to the Salon des Indépendants in 1904. He traveled to Brittany where he is influenced by the group of Pont-Aven and in 1906 contributes works he painted in Brittany to the 22nd Salon des Indépendants, where he met Henri Rousseau.
In 1908, after a term in the military working as a regimental librarian, he met Sonia Terk, who he later married, though at the time she was married to a German art dealer who she would soon divorce. In 1909, Delaunay began to paint a series of studies of the city of Paris and the Eiffel Tower. The following year, he married Terk, and the couple settled in a studio apartment in Paris, where their son Charles was born in January 1911. At the invitation of Wassily Kandinsky, Delaunay joined The Blue Rider (Der Blaue Reiter), a Munich-based group of abstract artists, in 1911, and his art took a turn for the abstract.
With Apollinaire, Robert travels to Berlin in January 1913 for an exhibition of his work at Galerie Der Sturm. On their way back to Paris, the two stay with August Macke in Bonn, and Macke introduces Max Ernst to them. When his painting La ville de Paris is rejected by the Armory Show as being too big he instructs Samuel Halpert to remove all his works from the show.