Exhibition 'Matisse in the 30s' in Philadelphia

"Matisse in the 1930s" is an exhibition organized by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and features a collection of works by Henri Matisse over the course of a decade of artistic exploration - from experimentation to failure to the artist's revival.

By 1930, Henri Matisse had already achieved considerable international renown, but was in a state of deep creative paralysis. A turning point came when he received a major commission to produce a work to decorate the main gallery of the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia. 

Thus, Henri Matisse created La Danse, a monumental fresco that definitively changed his artistic practice, allowing him to make multiple experiments that forever changed the nature of his work. The use of paper cut-outs became part of the painter's creative process, helping him to lay out his compositions, combining bold shapes and bold colors.

The exhibition highlights these essential transformations in Matisse's work in the 1930s, through a series of media such as wall and easel painting, sculpture, printmaking, drawing, and the illustrated book. The Museum also examines Matisse's relationship with the Parisian journal Cahiers d'art, which played a major role in the dissemination of Matisse's work during this period, and looks at his exhibitions, his continued engagement with decorative painting, his studio as a creative laboratory, and the role of his model and muse Lydia Delectorskaya in his studio practice.

Explore Matisse's time in Philadelphia and the influence it had on his work in the following years through more than 100 paintings, sculptures, prints, and drawings.

On view through January 29, 2023.

©photos : via Instagram @philamuseum