Sonia Delaunay, beyond the painting

 

 

"Flamenco Singer" 1915

 

 

 

Sonia Delaunay (1885-1979), ukrainian artist, was a key figure in parisian avant-garde. She first studied in Germany and later in Paris, where he had influences from Impressionism, Cubism and Fauvism. She experimented with Robert Delaunay, his husband, in the field of light and color, pursuing and abstract language directed toward a new art faraway from traditional habits. Together they create the Simultanism, current that focused on painting dynamism using simultaneous contrasts of colour. The artist expressed this trend both in painting and in the design of fashion, textiles and books, among others.The Delaunays associate Simultanism to modern life and urban development, and they wanted to bring it to all possible fields. Sonia claimed the importance of fashion design or decoration, equating them with painting or sculpture, in a moment when those minor arts were not valued.

 

 

 

Sonia Delaunay´s costume designs

 

 

 

The exhibition shows textile artwork together with the artist´s paintings, and underscores the period when the family lived in Madrid, city in which they settled in 1917 after I World War outbreak. The arrival in Madrid made her to approach the popular culture, above all flamenco, what she loved. After russian revolution, she no longer received an income. It was when Sonia began to design costumes for Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes. She designed her dresses by joining together small pieces of fabrics in different forms and textures. In parallel, she dedicated to interior decoration and, afterwards, she set up her own clothes brand and opened a shop first in Madrid and later in Paris.

 

 

 

Bal Bullier, 1913

 

 

 

Among her more relevant creations we can find her `simultaneous dresses´. The first of them was made in 1913 for Bal Bullier ballroom, and was defined by Apollinaire as `a living painting´. Sonia brings her designs on paper to canvas. It can be appreciated how flamenco culture influenced her in the `Grand Flamenco´ picture. It is also worth taking into account her designs for ballets, like the one she made for `Cleopatra´, or her dresses for film actresses, like the one she designed to Gloria Swanson.

 

 

 

Costume design for `Cleopatra´

 

 

 

Sonia Delaunay´s artwork is shown in 210 creations that belong to public institutions like the Pompidou Centre, the National Library of France, the Fashion Museum of Paris or Reina Sofía museum; as well as several private collections and the Thyssen funds, museum where it can be visited until October 10.

 

 

 

Dress designed for Gloria Swanson

 

 

 

 

 

If visual arts arouse emotions in the viewer, and also gastronomy, at its finest, can cause a similar effect, the relationship between both "disciplines" is more than demonstrated.

Cheese is a fundamental piece in gastronomy, its diversity allows it to be part of gastronomy different moments, from starters to desserts, and that is why Art Madrid includes it in this year’s edition of the Fair from an ambitious place. Cheese is given this way a closest view to the creation of a work of art, both from the point of view of the time spent in its execution process and the almost personalized study dedicated to each piece during its elaboration.

Like a plastic artist, the Cheese Master Affineur executes a series of actions making each piece an exclusive and individualized element. This is what Madrid cheese factory QAVA de Quesos and its Master Afinador José Luis Martín achieve.

QAVA & MARTÍN AFINADOR is a new store concept: a unique space designed to taste, learn, promote and buy cheese in Madrid, in the heart of Retiro district."

José Luis Martín is a key piece in the QAVA cheese factory. He has been working in the cheese world for more than 30 years, providing training throughout the world, visiting cheese shops, consulting and advising on the design and implementation of one of the most emblematic cheese shops in Spain. The fact of knowing the producers personally, and even advising them on the manufacture and design of their products, allows him to select specific batches, at different stages of maturation, to complete the cheese ripening and then convert each piece into a unique product, different and with its own distinct character, the signature of the Cheese Master.

In the profile of the Master Martín Afinador experience and pure knowledge merge. Martín Afinador is an advisor and consultant for artisanal cheese factories and product design, and for the best-specialised stores in the country, director of Gourmetquesos, director and coordinator of the Championship of the Best Cheeses in Spain during nine editions, technical director and jury in national and international cheese competitions and tastings, collaborator of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Academy of Spanish Gastronomy, director and coordinator of the cheese section of the Repsol Guide to the Best Foods in Spain and trainer for hospitality schools and food centres teaching, among other activities.

Cheese ripening is a complex process that requires time and dedication, in addition to a developed use of the senses. The Cheese Master Affineur, as a specialist in the field, works in all cheese stages (varied and complex), controls all stages of raw material transformation, supervises the evolution and development of cheeses according to the characteristics of each one of them, verifies the quality and the state when the cheeses arrive at their cellars, checks their care and conservation, and; finally, he controls its packaging and the type of wrapping suitable for its best preservation.

In Qava de Quesos they have two Cheese Refining Cellars. In these "tuning caves" or refrigerated chambers designed in constant conditions of temperature, humidity and ventilation, "we take great care of the cheeses until they reach their optimum point of consumption". The work of refining involves placing the cheeses on wooden shelves, turning them over daily and/or washing them frequently, brushing them periodically, as well as other regular handlings.

Among the services offered by Qava de Quesos, we can find specific courses and workshops, events for groups and companies, and advice on shop design and ripening rooms.