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Niki de Saint Phalle (1964) by Erling Mandelmann
Niki de Saint Phalle in 1964

Niki de Saint Phalle (Catherine-Marie-Agnès Fal de Saint Phalle, 29 October 1930 – 21 May 2002) was a French sculptor, painter, and filmmaker. She was born in Neuilly-sur-Seine, Hauts-de-Seine, France.

Saint Phalle created a series of works in the early 1960s called Tirs ("Shots"). These pieces of art included polythene bags of paint in human forms covered in white plaster. After this, Saint Phalle, made life-size dolls of women, such as brides and mothers giving birth. They were primarily made of plaster over a wire framework and plastic toys, then painted all white.

In 1949, Saint Phalle eloped with her childhood friend and American writer Harry Mathews. They had two children. They separated in 1960.

Saint Phalle died on 21 May 2002 in San Diego, California from emphysema, aged 71.

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