Michel Delacroix is truly a French original: an acclaimed master of the naïf tradition and one of the most popular and successful artists in the world today. A self-styled "painter of dreams and of the poetic past," Delacroix has devoted five decades to painting a city he calls "the Paris of then," the magical place where he was born, where he spent his boyhood, and where he continues to live to this day.
But the Paris Delacroix paints is not the urban metropolis of the present. It is the dream-like place the city became in the 1940s, during the Occupation, when "we suddenly jumped fifty years into the past. No more cars in the streets, very few lights. Paris suddenly became very quiet, very dark, and, though people were afraid, there was a brotherhood and spirit that was very delightful. "For Delacroix, who was then a child of seven and spared by his age from grasping "the cruelties and absurdities" of war, it was "the one great adventure of my live."
And it is to this special Paris - the Paris of by-gone years and innocent splendors that Delacroix has returned to over and over again in his gentle works. These works, renowned for their graceful balance of "the earthy and the urban, the cosmic and the ordinary," have captivated private collectors, museums and ordinary people alike throughout the world, earning the artist both universal acclaim and numerous awards.
In the U.S. alone, Delacroix's work has been featured in over 275 one-person shows, from New York City, Boston, and Washington, D.C., to Los Angeles, Carmel, Denver, Seattle, and San Francisco. Abroad, his work has been exhibited in France, Switzerland, Germany, Luxembourg, England, and Japan, and forms part of the permanent collections of the Musee International d'Art Naïf and the Foundation Max Fournay in Paris, and of private collections around the globe.
In 1995, Michel Delacroix was named an Official Artist of the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Ganges and commissioned to celebrate the 1996 Games in an oil painting. Titled Atlanta 1886-1996, Delacroix's stunning work was used to create an Official Poster for the 1996 Games and a special Limited Edition. In 1994, Delacroix was also honored by the U.S. Olympic Committee, which selected him to serve as an Official Artist and commissioned him to mark the one-hundredth anniversary of the modern Olympic Games in a painting. The resulting work, 1896 Olympics, was itself used to create an Official Poster and a beautiful Limited Edition. In 1995, Delacroix also became the Official Artist of the 1995 Special Olympics World Games. His magnificent Sport. Spirit.
Splendor:, which was commissioned for the occasion, became the Official Poster for the 1995 Games and a Limited Edition.
Following Atlanta 1896-1996, ACOG again honored Delacroix by commissioning him to create the Commemorative Painting and Cover Art of the Official Five CD Music Box Set of the 1996 Olympic Games. Entitled The Sound of the Games, Delacroix's painting will provide the cover image for this ambitious five-CD project, which features some of the biggest recording stars in Pop/R&B, Country, Latin, Classical and Jazz, including John Williams, Boyz II Men, Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds, Vince Gill, Gloria Estefan, Jon Secada, Placido Domingo, Trisha Yearwood, Luther Vandross, R. Kelly, Diane Celine, Julio Iglesias, Willie Nelson, Amy Grant, and Patty Loveless, among others.