22 September 2017

Matisse In The Studio Exhibition at The Royal Academy of Arts

Matisse In The Studio. Image courtesy of Royal Academy of Arts

Matisse In The Studio is currently exhibiting at  the Royal Academy of Arts until Sunday 12th November 2017.

This exhibition offers a rare insight into Matisse’s personal collection, which inspired his paintings, sculptures and drawings. Matisse drew his collection from all across the world, including pieces from a Thai Buddhist statuary,  Mali Bamana figures and furniture and textiles from North Africa. These pieces may not have been valuable but their symbolism was important to Matisse, who used them as a recurring theme throughout his career, by reinventing and reintroducing them into a new settingMatisse’s objects not only formed his body of work, but they also provided him with influences beyond the limits of Western art, as seen in his use of African sculpture and masks, which he used as a means to convey the human figure and face.  

Later, Matisse developed an interest in the Islamic art, that adorned his Nice studio. His collection of Islamic pieces would be used as props to create sensuous sets, depicting women in harems, surrounded by vivid backgrounds.  Matisse then went on to develop his cut-out style works, looking for inspiration through Chinese calligraphy and African textiles, as an expression of his own simplified language of signs.

Henri Matisse, Safrano Roses at The Window, 1925.
 Oil On Canvas 80 x 65 cm. Photo from the private collection. Image courtesy of the  Royal Academy of Arts

Henri Matisse, The Morrish Screen, 1921.
Oil on canvas 91 x74 cm. Philadelphia Museum of Art. Bequest of Lisa Norris Elkins, 1950. Photo © Philadelphia Museum of Art/Art Resource, NY. Artwork: © Succession H. Matisse/DACS 2017. Image courtesy of  the Royal Academy of Arts

Haiti North Africa, late 19th early 20th Century.
Cotton plain weave cut and appliquéd to bast fibre cloth. 217 x 212 cm. Private collection, on loan to Musée Matisse, Nice. Former collection of Henri Matisse Photo © François Fernandez, Nice. Image courtesy of  the Royal Academy of Arts

After you have visited the exhibition, then why not head to Grays and build on your own collection of antiques inspired by Matisse.

19th Century Turkish Ottoman Green Ground Calligraphy Textile.
Available at Antique Choices

Close up of the Turkish Ottoman Green Ground Calligraphy Textile, above

19th Century Mother of Pearl Wooden Table, made in either Egypt or Syria.
Available at Antique Choices

Chinese blue and white bowl, Kangxi (1662-1722), with two panels one decorated with two ladies on a fenced terrace, the other with two men on a terrace standing at the entrance of a tiled room, the panels divided by text, the rim decorated with liewen with five cartouches containing peaches, diameter: 8 3/8in., 21.3cm,  height: 3 3/4in. 9.5cm. Available at Guest and Gray

The other side of the above image showing the Chinese inscription.
Chinese blue and white censer, Kangxi (1662-1722), decorated with auspicious objects with inscriptions which roughly translate as Zia Huo Fang promises to be forever devoted to Buddha, the vertical inscription reads devoted disciple Yip You Boon happily presents this piece, Chenghua six-character mark, diameter: 8in., 20.30cm.
Available at Guest and Gray 
18th -19th Century Pagan Style Burmese Wooden Standing Medicine Buddha.
Available at  Peter Sloane

A Pemde Tribe Democratic Republic of Congo Mask. Pr-war date, from an ex American Private Collection.
Available at Peter Sloane

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