From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Laurencin was born in Paris, where she was raised by her mother and lived out most of her life. During the period of the First World War, Laurencin left France and went to Spain with her German born husband, Baron Otto von Waëtjen (1914). The couple subsequently lived together briefly in Düsseldorf. After they divorced in 1920, she returned to Paris.
During the early years of the 20th century, Laurencin was an important figure of the Parisian Avant-Garde. During the early years of the twentieth century, she was romantically involved with the poet Guillaume Apollinaire and has often been remembered as his muse. Laurencin has also been remembered as the only female Cubist, and while her work does show the influence of Pablo Picasso and of her close friend Georges Braque, she developed a unique approach to abstraction which often centered around the representation of women and female communities. Further, her work lies outside the bounds of the Cubist project in its attempt to develop a specifically feminine aesthetic through the use of pastels and curvilinear forms.
In her painting, drawing and printmaking, Laurencin continued to explore themes of femininity and what she considered to be feminine modes of representation until her death. In 1983, on the one hundredth anniversary of Laurencin's birth, the Musée Marie Laurencin opened in Nagano Prefecture, Japan. The museum now houses over 500 works and an archive.