French abstract artist, Robert Delaunay, painting this fascinating 53″ diameter oil on canvas “mandala” entitled “Simultaneous Contrasts: Sun and Moon” around 1912 and is part of the Museum of Modern Art’s collection.
From The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA Highlights, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, revised 2004, originally published 1999:
The musicality of Delaunay’s work lay in color, which he studied closely. In fact, he derived the phrase “Simultaneous Contrasts” from the treatise On the Law of the Simultaneous Contrast of Colors, published in 1839 by Michel-Eugène Chevreul. Absorbing Chevreul’s scientific analyses, Delaunay has here gone beyond them into a mystical belief in color, its fusion into unity symbolizing the possibility for harmony in the chaos of the modern world.
For me it’s his use of color in this dramatic painting that captured my attention…that he uses the sections of colors to define the forms/structures in this piece rather that creating the structures and then adding coloring.
When I create my mandalas, the design/structure defines the piece. I create the design then color/paint it. Viewing Delaunay’s piece inspires me to explore the idea of creating a series of mandalas without structure…just sections of color that come together to form a mandala. I’m very excited this idea!
How about you? Are you ready to let go of structure and just color without lines?
If you would want your mandala or your idea for a mandala to be considered for the “Mandala of the Day”, read about how on the Participate page. It’s easy!