This effervescent painting by Italian Futurist Gino Severini conveys a sense of whirling motion through a combination of shifting planes of color. See how it compares to works created in Paris in the 1920s by artists like Léger, Picasso, and Duchamp in “Léger: Modern Art and the Metropolis,” now it its final weeks.

La Modiste (The Milliner),” 1910-11, Gino Severini

Fernand Léger argued for the independence of painting from its traditional role of representation and proposed instead that it should attain the greatest possible dissonance and “intensity” by means of contrasting shapes and colors. The amplified effect of contrast would create in painting an “equivalent” to the experience of modern life.

See how Léger and his contemporaries Duchamp, Picasso, and Mondrian and others transformed the course of painting in 1920s Paris in the exhibition “Léger: Modern Art and the Metropolis.” On view through January 5.

Contrast of Forms,” 1913-14, by Fernand Léger

This beautifully laid-out publication, Prose of the Trans-Siberian and of Little Jehanne of France, was created through the collaboration of poet Blaise Cendrars and artist Sonia Delaunay-Terk. The two originally hoped to produce 150 copies, which when unfolded, was estimated to equal the height of the Eiffel Tower.

See it now in “Leger: Modern Art and the Metropolis,” now in it’s final weeks. Visit before the holiday rush!

“Prose of the Trans-Siberian and of Little Jehanne of France,” 1913, Sonia Delaunay, written by Blaise Cendrars

Léger designed this monumental backdrop and the costumes for a ballet called “Skating Rink” in order to produce the effect of an abstract composition of moving color. See it alongside works by other 1920s modernists including Duchamp, Picasso, Gris, and Delaunay in “Léger: Modern Art and the Metropolis.” Hurry, show closes on Sunday, January 5.

“Skating Rink,” reconstruction of backdrop, 1921, by Fernand Léger (Courtesy Dansmuseet - Museum Rolf de Maré Stockholm)

Can you spot the three Eiffel Towers in this painting? Robert Delaunay included the Parisian architectural icon in many of his works. For a closer look at Delaunay’s colorful, prismatic style, come visit “Léger: Modern Art and the Metropolis,” now in its final weeks at the Museum. Make sure to beat the holiday rush!

“Three-Part Windows,” 1912, Robert Delauna


You’ve never seen Philadelphia like this. #LegerinPhilly

ZOOM IN: John Lithgow <3 our Léger Family Guide. Pick one up at the exhibition entrance and take an imaginative journey through Léger’s city with your little ones. #PMAFamily #LegerinPhilly

John Lithgow pictured with Anna Vallye, the Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellow in Modern and Contemporary Art, in front of “The City,” 1919, by Fernand Léger.


A fabulous Parisian affair with a performances by The Bearded Ladies and a special opportunity to see the Museum’s underground tunnel. #LegerinPhilly

Hosted by the Young Friends of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Thursday Oct. 10

Study for Lighting Designs, by Alexandra Exter. Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations. © Association Alexandra Exter, Paris 2013