Dora Maar
Dora Maar
Dora Maar was born Henriette Theodora Markovitch in Paris on November 22nd, 1907. She was the daughter of a Croatian architect, Joseph Markovitch, and a French woman named Julie Voisin.
Marcel Duchamp
Marcel Duchamp was born in 1887 to a successful notary. Duchamp and his five siblings grew up in Blainville, Normandy. Their young lives were greatly influenced by art, resulting in four of them becoming artists themselves: Marcel, Raymond Duchamp-Villon, Suzanne Duchamp-Crotti, and Jacques Villon.
Françoise Gilot
The first meeting between Françoise Gilot and Pablo Picasso occurred in 1943, when they were dining near on another. Picasso approached with a bowl of cherries. Gilot and her friend invited Picasso to see their show, and he did. During the next three years Picasso and Gilot's relationship grew.
Olga Khokhlova
Olga Khokhlova was born in Ukraine in 1891. She became a ballet dancer in the Ballets Russes as a young woman. She was a dancer in Parade in 1917, which was a collaboration between Sergei Diaghilev and Jean Cocteau. With Cocteau’s urging, Picasso became in charge of the costumes and set design for this production. Their romance was slow at first – she was chaste and required courting but Picasso was 35 and desperately wanted to start a family.
Marie-Thérèse Walter
With an age gap of 28 years between Marie-Thérèse Walter and Pablo Picasso, what life and experience did she have with her lover until her tragic death?
Amélie Matisse
article-2590862-1ca7b3f300000578-709_306x423Amélie Matisse, born Amélie Parayre, grew up in Beauzelle and Paris the daughter of Armand and Catherine Parayre. Not much is known about her young life, except that her parents were part of a political free and forward thinking circle. Her father Armand was a school teacher turned director of the activist newspaper Avenir de Seine et Marne. They were champions of a free, equal France. Amélie met Henri Matisse in 1897 when they incidentally sat next to one another at a wedding in Paris. They were married a short while later in 1898. Amélie opened a hat shop on rue de Chateaudun in 1899 and the couple, along with Matisse’s daughter Marguerite from a previous relationship, moved into a small apartment just down the street. Though loving, their relationship was also one of practical symbiosis. Amélie understood that, while loved intensely by her husband, she would also come second to his painting. She accepted and thrived on this, working hard to make sure that Matisse had the tools he needed to find success. They were very poor in the early years of their marriage, with Matisse a struggling artist. Their two sons, Jean and Pierre, were born in 1899 and 1900 respectively.  In 1902 Amélie’s parents were struck by financial scandal deriving from the fraud of their employer. This incident made Amélie suspicious of the world, a trend which followed her for the rest of her life. Amélie was so engaged in Matisse’s career, that she acted like a wife and personal manager to the artist. Their relationship began to falter when Matisse sought more independence, including finding an art dealer of his own named Sergei Shchukin. This coincided with a move into a larger home in Issy-les-Moulineaux, where Matisse was able to be more absent and alone than in the studio homes they had shared before. The lack of dependence on Amélie was difficult for her.

Henri Matisse Portrait of Mme. Matisse, 1913

This was exacerbated when, in 1939, Amélie felt her role in the creative process being overtaken by Lydia Delectorskaya, who had been hired as an assistant for Matisse, but in recent years was more of a model and intellectual and creative partner to Matisse. Amélie, feeling that her role in Matisse’s life was threatened, asked him to choose between the two. Though he picked his wife, they were separated by the end of the year. Not much is known about the later years of Amélie’s life, but in 1944 she was arrested and jailed for 6 months for working with resistance. Amélie died in 1958 and is buried in the same plot as Matisse. References ‘Biography,’ Accessed November 18, 2016. Hodges, Michael. ‘A daughter tortured by Nazis. A besotted, suicidal muse. His own cancer and chronic depression: The unbelievable story of Henri Matisse,’ The Daily Mail. March 29, 2004. Accessed November 18, 2016. Russell, John. Matisse: Father & Son. New York: Henry N. Abrams, 1999. Schjeldahl, Peter. ‘Art as Life: The Matisse we never knew,’ The New Yorker. August 29, 2005. Accessed November 18, 2016. Tuchman, Phyllis. ‘I Shall Always Love Painting More,’ The Washington Post. September 25, 2005. Accessed November 18, 2016.
Jacqueline Roque
Explore Jacqueline Roque, a biography about the young woman who guarded Pablo Picasso's privacy and inspired him for the last 20 years of his life.
Paul Rosenberg
Paul Rosenberg was born in Paris in 1881 to Jewish merchant turned antiques dealer Alexandre Rosenberg. Alexandre had emigrated from Bratislava to Paris and established an antiques gallery. Alexandre moved into fine art, beginning to collect MonetCézanneManet, and Renoir.
Saskia van Uylenburgh
Saskia van Uylenburgh was born in 1612 the youngest in a family of 9 children. Her family was wealthy and her father served as burgomaster (mayor) in Leeuwarden in Friesland.
Jacques Villon
It was in 1891 that Jacques Villon created his first etching – an image of his father. Soon after he left to study at L’Ecole des Beaux-Arts. This was the same time that he changed his name from Gaston Duchamp as an homage to French poet François Villon – this was also a way to differentiate himself from his siblings.
Ambroise Vollard
Ambroise Vollard was born in 1867 in the French colony of Réunion, an island in the Indian Ocean. At age 19 he was sent to study law in Montpellier, France, and from there moved on to Paris at age 21.

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