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Provence in Primary Color: Matisse and the Art of Cut-Outs

Arts France Museums

February 22, 2021 by Andrea Szyper

From his mid 60s to the end of his life in his 80s, Henri Matisse worked in paper. After a long and illustrious art career as a painter, his move into this new art realm pushed modern art and design forward.

He cut forms from brightly painted and colored paper and worked with gallery assistants to place and arrange complementary forms and colors on paper. His compositions were forward looking, and the grand scale of some of his works set the stage for the installation artists who followed.

Matisse’s cutout work gave him new enthusiasm for creation in his later years. As his health left him, he found new energy and inspiration in this new approach to art making. Working in Venice, in Provence, he was inspired by the clear light. Here is a little insight into his creative process.

As part of our UnTours at Home series, we are exploring the art history and cultural heritage (old and new) of Europe, and our French art expert Pamela Morton is back by popular demand to talk about Matisse in the twilight of his long and fertile career.

We hope you can join us for Provence: Making Art with Matisse, a 90-minute Zoom event that combines an illustrated talk with a simple, hands-on art class, well suited for all levels of ability.