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Matisse: In Search of True Painting

Item# 80-016084 

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  • Editors: Dorthe Aagesen and Rebecca Rabinow
  • Publisher: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Pages: 272
  • Illustrations: 206 (153 in full color)
  • Binding: Clothbound
  • Dimensions: 9'' x 10 1/2''
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Award: Named one of the Books of the Year by Financial Times for 2012
  • ISBN: 09780300184976



Edited by Dorthe Aagesen and Rebecca Rabinow

Throughout his long career, Henri Matisse (18691954) continually expanded the boundaries of his art. By repeating images in pairs, trios, and series, he conducted an ongoing dialogue with his earlier works in order to, as he put it, "push further and deeper into true painting." In this fresh approach to a much-studied artist, prominent scholars from the United States and Europe examine more than sixty works in concise chapters that focus on this aspect of Matisses working process. From early pairs such as Young Sailor I and II (19078) through a series of late studio scenes from Venice (194648), Matisse is shown revisiting a given theme with the aim of devising innovative, often radical, solutions to such problems as how to portray light, handle paint, select colors, and manipulate perspective. New technical studies of the early paired works and photographs documenting the evolution of his later paintings help to elucidate Matisses complex evolution. In numerous excerpts from letters and interviews, he is revealed as an artist who regularly questioned himself and his methods, a man of powerful intellect who regarded each new painting as an adventure. A significant addition to art historical literature, Matisse: In Search of True Painting is a revelatory study of a seminal figure in twentieth-century modernism.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

One cannot have too many books on Matisse. This is the handsome catalogue to a Metropolitan Museum show, which focuses on how Matisse pushed further and deeper into true painting by repeating images in pairs and series to find solutions for portraying light, handling paint and manipulating perspective.
Financial Times

The catalogue, a pleasing, eminently readable text with an introduction and twenty- eight concise essays, skips as lithely across Matisses oeuvre as does the exhibition, up to the moment the artist laid down his brush and reached for a pair of scissors.
The Burlington Magazine

In the catalogue, renowned Matisse scholar Jack Flam brilliantly reconstructs the artists development
Culture Spectator

Matisse: In Search of True Painting (Yale, 35) views the French artists work via a predilection for pairs. Matisse often painted two or more versions of the same scene to experiment with styles and techniques, regularly questioning his own methods.
Hot Type, Sunday Telegraph

gives great insight into the French artists methods, exploring how he solved painterly problems with light, colour and perspective by revisiting his own compositions.
Reading Room, Art Illustrators

Matisse: In Search of True Painting explores in surprising depth the modernists habit of painting in series while also making for a thorough, exacting retrospective.
The Daltonian

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