Sunday, 15 June 2014

Matisse cut-outs

Friday was a beautifully sunny day and a perfect day to head to the Tate Modern to see the Matisse cut-outs exhibition. I was mightily impressed, not just by the scale of the works, but by the quality and amount produced by a man in his 80s. It was so fresh and invigorating. There were about 14 rooms in all, each displaying immense pieces, all made from painted paper which was then cut out to create the shapes. Many of the artworks were accompanied by photographs showing the artist at work. They illustrated how many of the artworks were actually pinned to the walls of his home first. In this way, he could observe them and move them around as he needed, deciding on the layout before he progressed. He completely immersed himself in the process, having assistants to help him move the images around, once he'd pointed where he wanted them to go with a long stick! From a distance the shapes of each piece look just like one solid piece of cut paper, but then you get up close and see how he patched pieces of the same colour together to create the desired shape. My favourite room was the one containing the blue nudes, where the the beautifully formed figures are accentuated by the simplicity of one colour. 

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