"If you hear I am no longer painting, it is because I have died."

Orphaned as a teenager while studying at the school for decorative arts, Jacqueline Lamba supported herself by creating designs for department stores and performing as a nude aquatic dancer. Intelligent and well-read, her cousin recommended she read some works by André Breton, the upstart leader of the Surrealist movement. Feeling deeply connected to his writings, she declined an offer of introduction from her friend Dora Maar. Instead, she planned an "accidental meeting," which would become the poetic accounting of their first night together. She would forever be known as the "scandalous beauty" of Breton's most famous work, Mad Love.


Unfortunately, Lamba's expectations to embrace Breton and Surrealism while being her own independent artist were met with Breton's expectations of her duties as a wife, mother, and muse. Nevertheless, she participated in the surrealist exhibition of the 1930s, though sometimes her works were displayed without her name, and she was mostly referred to as the "wife of."

Exiled to New York during the war, Lamba became involved with the American artist David Hare who had been asked to work with Breton as an editor on VVV magazine. Lamba had been asked to translate as she spoke English, and Breton would not. Hare was smitten, and their affair would end the Lamba/ Breton marriage. 


With Hare, Lamba enjoyed the freedom and finances to paint again full-time. Hare introduced her to the Native Americans of the Southwest, and their objects, art, and connection to nature would greatly influence her. Unfortunately, after the birth of their son, she was forced to face Hare's repeated infidelities and left him to return to France.


Now without the responsibilities of men or children, these later years led to her mature work. Inspired by her surroundings in the city and countryside, she dedicated herself to a lifelong inquiry into the exploration and embodiment of light with detailed compositions of Paris and airy exaltation of the landscape, sky, and water.


She succumbed to various health issues and died at the age of 88.


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