The Secret of Women
Robe de Mariee
Paul Delvaux (September 23, 1897 – July 20, 1994) was a Belgian painter, famous for his surrealist paintings with female nudes.
The paintings Delvaux became famous for usually feature numbers of nude women who stare as if hypnotized, gesturing mysteriously, sometimes reclining incongruously in a train station or wandering through classical buildings, accompanied by skeletons or puzzled scientists. Delvaux would repeat variations on these themes for the rest of his long life, although some departures can be noted. Among them are his paintings of 1945-47, rendered in a flattened style with distorted and forced perspective effects, and the series of crucifixions and deposition scenes enacted by skeletons, painted in the 1950s.
In the late 1950s he produced a number of night scenes in which trains are observed by a little girl seen from behind. These compositions contain nothing overtly surrealistic, yet the clarity of moonlit detail is hallucinatory in effect. Trains had always been a subject of special interest to Delvaux, who never forgot the wonder he felt as a small child at the sight of the first electric trams in Brussels.
In 1959 he executed a mural at the Palais du Congrès in Brussels, one of several large scale decorative commissions Delvaux undertook. He was named director of the Académie royal des Beaux-arts of Belgium in 1965. In 1982 the Paul Delvaux Museum opened in Saint-Idesbald.
Delvaux died in Veurne in 1994.
Call of the Night