“Ms.Gioia has delivered a gift for all those who have a passion for art, style, and the great personalities of the 20th century. . . . the intellectual is mixed with the personal, which allows for a very smooth read and segues from a routine biography into a chronicle of an artist and her creativity within her ‘worlds.’”
Ms.Gioia has delivered a gift for all those who have a passion for art, style, and the great personalities of the 20th century.
The Baroness Kuffner, aka Tamara de Lempicka, was a well-known fixture on the international social circuit as well within the rarefied inner circles of the art world. Ms. Gioia shows us that The Baroness was far more modern than we had even suspected—and in ways not confined to the fine arts.
What is most appealing about this volume is that the intellectual is mixed with the personal, which allows for a very smooth read and segues from a routine biography into a chronicle of an artist and her creativity within her “worlds.”
We learn not only of her heritage and long life, but also of her humble beginnings in art, and how she parlayed her talents and style into becoming an influential part of the first half of the 20th century.
Aside from her paintings, for which she is famous, she was a master at self-promotion using techniques heretofore only used by the movie business that did not become standard operating procedure until much later in the century for anyone of notoriety.
To put it simply, Tamara was force to be reckoned with on every front. She was as prolific in her work as she was with her travels and talents. She was modern before we really knew how to explain modern; her influences are varied and always exhibited in her work as by the use of skyscrapers, which profoundly affected her following her first visit to the USA and New York City.
“. . . Lempicka’s skyscrapers burst into stylized and graphic vision with their straight lines that contrast the serpentine curves of her figures . . . were already backgrounds for her pictures by 1929 . . .”
At any rate, Tamara de Lempicka: The Queen of the Modern is a book that is destined to become a part of your collection of high quality art books and should be thought of as part memoir and part reference with equal attention paid to both. The more scholarly sections are reserved for analyses of her work and the more relaxed cover the stories of her rich life. Tamara de Lempicka is lushly illustrated and presented as the subject dictates.