Interesting Facts About Henri Matisse
Henri Matisse impacted modern art as one of the best colorists of the twentieth century. Throughout his career, he experimented with a variety of media, techniques, and art trends, inspired by the artists with whom he worked.
Woman with a Hat (1905), a prominent illustration of the fauvist movement in French painting, is one of his most recognized works. He also created sketches, sculptures, and graphic art in addition to paintings. Here are seven fascinating facts about the artist Henri Matisse.
1. On New Year's Eve, Henri Matisse was born.
Henri Emile benoît Matisse was born in the commune of le cateau-cambrésis in northern France on December 31, 1869, at eight o'clock at night. Emile hippolyte henri matisse and his wife anna hélose gérard had him as their first kid. The couple had a second son, Emile Auguste, in July 1872, but he died before his second birthday.
Auguste Emile, their third and final child, was born on July 19, 1874. Soon after Henri's birth, Hippolyte Matisse founded a shop and eventually became a successful grain merchant. Throughout her life, Anna Gerard was a great supporter of her husband and two boys. She hailed from a family of tanners and oversaw the house-paint section of her husband's shop.
2. Henri Matisse was a law student who worked as a clerk.
Despite his creative prowess, Matisse originally planned to pursue a career as a lawyer. He went to law school, passed the bar, and worked as a law clerk. He went to morning sketching courses before going to the office. Matisse's father intended his eldest son, Henri, to take over the family grain business in the future, but Henri was not interested.
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3. Henri Matisse discovered his vocation while recovering from appendicitis.
When Matisse was young, he had appendicitis, which impacted the path of his life. He was confined to a bed for months after his surgery. His mother handed him a paint kit to help him pass the time during his protracted rehabilitation period. It was at this key point that he discovered his love for art.
He adored the freedom it provided him, describing it as "a kind of utopia" at one point. He traveled to Paris to fully pursue painting after leaving his work as a law clerk and disregarding his father's request for him to take over the business.
4. Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso developed a rivalry.
Matisse and Picasso initially met in the salon of gertrude stein, an American novelist and art collector who backed both of their careers.
Despite their competing natures, they first loathed each other but came to admire each other as artists and were lifelong friends. Their friendship was likened to a boxing fight by Matisse himself. "No one has ever looked at Matisse's paintings with greater attention than I have, and no one has ever looked at mine with greater care than he," Picasso famously said.
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5. Amélie Matisse, Henri Matisse's wife, combined personal and professional interests.
In 1898, Matisse married Amélie Parayre, the outspoken daughter of a liberal educator. Amélie became Matisse's artistic inspiration, model, and business manager as his reputation for highly imaginative painting grew.
Matisse employed a Russian exile named Lydia Delectorskaya as a model in 1935, and the two had a strong knowledge of each other's work. Amélie was envious of their collaboration, and the Matisses split up in July 1939. Delectorskaya returned to Matisse after a brief break and worked for him till his death.
6. Henri Matisse invented the technique of "scissor painting."
Matisse's movement was affected by his operation for stomach cancer in 1941, and he couldn't stand for lengthy periods afterward. During his rehabilitation, though, his painting took on a new, spectacular phase. Matisse invented the "painting with scissors" technique, in which he chopped painted papers into shapes and hung them on his walls. He recut, merged, and assembled the footage until he was satisfied with the result.
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7. Henri Matisse was the creator and leader of the fauvism art movement.
In 1905, Henri Matisse and a group of artists participated in the Salon d'automne show in Paris. The critic louis vauxcelles dismissed the group as "Fauves" after viewing the bright and non-naturalistic use of color in the canvases on show (wild beasts).
The art movement fauvism was named after this. Though it only lasted a few years, from 1904 to 1908, fauvism was the first of the twentieth century's major modern art trends to break away from representational aspects. Henri Matisse was a co-founder of the movement and the most recognized leader of the Fauves, with André Derain.
8. Henri Matisse's final piece was a stained-glass window design.
La rosace, a circular stained-glass window, was Matisse's final creation before his death in 1954. It was commissioned as a monument for his mother, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, an art collector and a big admirer of Matisse, by future New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller. He wrote to a coworker, "nothing would have pleased Mother more." It was installed in the pocantico Hills Union Church in Tarrytown, New York, where it still stands today.
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9. Henri Matisse's daughter kept meticulous records of his work.
Matisse's daughter with model Caroline Joblaud, Marguerite Duthuit, was born four years before he married Amélie and modeled for him for decades. She also worked as an archivist and assistant to her father.
Marguerite created the authoritative documentation of Matisse's artistic process as well as a catalog of his works after his death. She died of a heart attack at the age of 87 while working on the last phases of the catalog.
10. His daughter was tortured and imprisoned in a detention camp by the Gestapo.
During World War II, when the nazis conquered France in 1940, despite his son Pierre's advice to evacuate before the invasion, Matisse remained in his homeland. In September of 1940, he wrote to his son. "What remains of France if everyone who has any value leaves?" Marguerite Matisse, Matisse's daughter, was a member of the French resistance to the German occupation.
In 1944, she was tortured by the Gestapo in a Rennes prison and sentenced to the ravensbrück concentration camp in Germany, where she was almost killed. Marguerite managed to flee to safety after an allied bombing raid stopped the train transporting her to Ravensbrück. When word of her escape reached an anguished Henri Matisse, he proclaimed it a "miracle."
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11. After interactions with well-known artists, Matisse's techniques shifted dramatically at the start of his career.
He began by painting landscapes and still-lifes in a more traditional manner. Matisse began creating works influenced by the impressionist movement after meeting Australian artist John Peter Russell. Paul Cezanne, a French artist, was his greatest influence. He later became a member of the Fauves movement, exhibiting his work among artists such as Georges Braque, Raoul Dufy, and Gustave Moreau.
12. At the armory show, Henri Matisse's paintings were torched in effigy.
Henri Matisse was a French artist who worked in a variety of media, including printmaking and sculpting. He was working on a sculpture when it inadvertently fractured, and the broken fragments led him to create the blue nude, one of his most controversial works (nu bleu).
The French people were stunned when nu blue was first seen in 1907 at the société des arts indépendants. When the painting's effigy was destroyed at the Chicago Armory Show in 1913, it became an international sensation. Blue nude is currently regarded as one of Matisse's most important works. It would subsequently inspire Pablo Picasso to create Les Demoiselles d'Avignon, one of his most well-known works (the young ladies of avignon).
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13. Matisse was an animal enthusiast.
Matisse was a lover of nature and animals, and cousi, minouche, and la puce were his three feline pals. Every morning, he is claimed to have fed his kitties brioche bread. Matisse, a bird lover, had pet doves that he bought from merchants along the seine. These and other creatures have appeared in his work.
14. During his final years, Matisse was confined to a wheelchair.
As a result, he created some of his most famous cut-out sculptures. Matisse began creating works using a pair of scissors and paper after he could no longer stand for long periods. He arranged them on his walls using a long stick until he was satisfied with the result. This was dubbed "painting with scissors" by him.