Wearing the Pierrot-Éclair costume designed by Sonia Delaunay, on the set of René Le Somptier’s film Le P’tit Parigot
Sonia Delaunay's exploration of expressive color in the field of textile design differentiates her significantly from other members of the contemporary avant-garde. Besides designing, making, and selling garments in her own fashion boutique, she was responsible for costume design in a range of the performing arts, including theatre and dance. She ended up creating a line of textiles so significant that it was picked up by one of the biggest fabric manufacturers in Europe.
The Pierrot mask originated in Italy at the end of the 16th century. His character is a servant immediately identifiable by his baggy white costume. Pierrot is a reliable, astute servant, with a knack for setting people up but also helping get his master out of scrapes.
This shot was made on the set of Rene Le Somptier's film Le p'tit parigot (The Small Parisian), 1926. The costume of Pierrot created by Delaunay went beyond the traditional depiction of this character. While keeping the amplitude of the outfit, traditional shoes, a big collar, the artist created an avant-garde image. Broken lines cross the costume; the collar is transformed into a pure form, amplified by three concentric circles. In this costume, Delaunay applied her theory of Simultanism, suggesting movements and vibrations through lines. Her textiles and fashion designs of the 1920s saw Simultanism escape the confines of art and go directly to the streets, into everyday life. As in her Simultaneous dress, her costumes suggested movement in the concept of the design and a transformation of the female body.