Henri Matisse: Goldfish
Henri Emoile Matisse, born in 1869, is regarded as one of the “great formative figures in 20th-century art”, as well as the leader of the Fauve group. Fauvism is defined as “an early-20th-century movement in painting begun by a group of French artists and marked by the use of bold, often distorted forms and vivid colors.” Matisse was associated with this group due to his use of vivid colors, as well as his unusual style of presenting objects. Many critics at this time called him, as well as other artists with similar styles, “a disgrace for art and therefore called them 'The Fauves'. The Fauves means 'Wild Beasts', a name that the artists of the group accepted with pride.” The main goals of the artists in this movement were to break away from the rigid Impressionist movement, and begin using bolder colors, as well as their own interpretations of shapes. The work of Matisse is based on the principals and possibilities of 'leaving out'. The human mind can fill in what is missing in the painting, like dimension, details and plastical forms. The Fauves expressed their feelings of joy for life and joy for art and painting. Fauvism paved the way for future styles of art, and was considered radical in the early 20th century.
Henri Emoile Matisse was born in Le Cateau in northern France on December 31, 1869. The son of a middle class family, his first career was in the law field. However, an appendicitis attack in 1890 rendered him bedridden, and with much time on his hands, he began to study the art of painting. To help alleviate his boredom, his mother bought him a paint box, and thus began his new passion: painting. In 1893, the work of Matisse was noticed by Gustav Moreau, (1826-1898) French painter, who developed a distinctive style in the Symbolist mode. Matisse displayed his work for the first time in 1896 at the ‘Salon de la Societe Nationale’. In 1903, Matisse was exposed to the pointillist paintings of Henri Edmond Cross and Paul Signac. Pointillism was a late 19th-century method of painting, consisting of depositing small dots or strokes of pure color on the canvas. Seen from a distance, these “points” blend and give the effect of a different color and heightened luminosity. The style, a development of impressionist color theories, was originated by the French painters Georges Seurat and Paul Signac.