Matisse, His Art and His Textiles

Matisse, His Art and His Textiles

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by Ann Dumas, Spurling, Royal Academy of Arts Staff, Remi Labrusse
     
 
Henri Matisse's ancestors had been weavers for generations: textiles, a key to his visual imagination, were in his blood. Although he was to outgrow every other influence, textiles retained their power for him throughout his life. His studio in Nice was a treasure house of exotic Persian carpets, delicate Arab embroideries, richly hued African wall hangings, and any

Overview

Henri Matisse's ancestors had been weavers for generations: textiles, a key to his visual imagination, were in his blood. Although he was to outgrow every other influence, textiles retained their power for him throughout his life. His studio in Nice was a treasure house of exotic Persian carpets, delicate Arab embroideries, richly hued African wall hangings, and any number of colorful cushions, curtains, costumes, patterned screens, and backcloths.

This sumptuously illustrated book, which accompanies a groundbreaking exhibition at the Mus�e Matisse, Le Cateau-Cambr�sis; the Royal Academy of Arts, London; and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, explores for the first time Matisse's relationship with the textiles that surrounded him from his earliest days. Charting how the fabrics he painted became the very fabric of his painting, the authors examine the ways in which one of the greatest pioneers in modern art history used what he called his "working library" of textiles to furnish, order, and compose his extraordinary works of art.

Author Bio: Ann Dumas is an independent exhibition curator. Jack Flam is professor of art and art history at Brooklyn College and New York University's Institute of Fine Arts. R�mi Labrusse is professor of contemporary art history at the Universit� de Picardie, Amiens. Hilary Spurling is working on the second volume of a biography of Matisse. Dominique Szymusiak is director of the Mus�e Matisse, Le Cateau-Cambr�sis.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publishers Weekly
Matisse came from a clan of weavers and maintained a working library of textiles throughout his life, drawing on them for inspiration. This book the catalogue for a travelling exhibition that makes stops at Paris s Musee Matisse, London s Royal Academy of Arts and New York s Metropolitan Museum of Art documents a small portion of that collection, which has been rediscovered a half-century after his death, but the focus here among the 190 color illustrations is on the paintings and drawings in which the textile collection plays a prominent role. Among the four essayists, Flam (Matisse and Picasso) argues that Matisse s use of decorative motifs was embedded in his understanding of the new, non-narrative means of painting pioneered by the Post-Impressionists. Others cover Matisse s relation to the arts of Islam and his work in chasubles. Not for the casual reader seeking an introduction to the master s works, this book nevertheless provides enthusiasts with previously unplumbed depths. (Apr.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781903973462
Publisher:
Royal Academy of Arts
Publication date:
01/05/2005
Pages:
216
Product dimensions:
10.12(w) x 11.37(h) x 0.87(d)

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Matisse, His Art and His Textiles 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What does the name 'Matisse' bring to mind? For most, it would probably be the fact that he was a great artist, perhaps some would think of his use of color, the Fauvist movement, or perhaps his cut-outs, works that marked his late career. Textiles, fabrics would probably not come to many minds. Now, this sumptuous volume published to accompany an exhibit that traveled to France, Britain, and New York sheds light on how very important these elements were to Matisse personally and to his oeuvre. Matisse's unique vision was astounding. In addition to his paintings, he sculpted, illustrated books, and designed sets for Diaghilev. Born in the north of France, which is the core of that country's textile industry, Matisse was exposed early on to the beauty of fabrics.. For many generations his family had been weavers, perhaps his love of textiles came to him naturally. It's been said that he was particularly attracted to Islamic art, the intricate patterns and colors that arrested the eye. What is known is that his Nice studio held a veritable trove of exotic carpets, embroideries, wall hangings, and all manner of brilliantly colored cushions and curtains. His use of textiles is evident in his paintings in which he uses fabric as a backdrop or simply to drape a model. It was, indeed, part and parcel of his art. Consider the use of fabric in his 'Purple Robe and Anemones' - there is, of course, the purple striped robe worn by his model but also the two wall coverings in golds, red, blue. Amazing. Or, consider his 'Interior, Flowers, and Parakeets,' in which we find the table covered by a colorful, intricately patterned runner above a diamond patterned ruby rug. Many of the fabrics on display in the exhibit and brought to vibrant life in this marvelous volume have been stored away since Matisse's death in 1954. 'Matisse, His Art, and His Textiles, ' in addition to being superbly illustrated, explores the relationship of Matisse's fabrics to his paintings, and thus adds considerably to our knowledge and appreciation of one of the forerunners of modern art. - Gail Cooke