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Henri Matisse was an artist of colour and sensuous line; an unerring eye until the end

By Joanna Mendelssohn, Principal Fellow (Hon), Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne. Editor in Chief, Design and Art of Australia Online, The University of Melbourne
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Review: Matisse: Life & Spirit, Art Gallery of New South Wales

I saw work by Henri Matisse (1869-1954) for the first time when I was seven. It was a tapestry, Polynesia, newly acquired for the collection of the Art Gallery of NSW. I wondered at the simplicity of the clean, white, marine shapes floating on blue squares.

Matisse: Life & Spirit, the gallery’s summer blockbuster, shows how this rhythmic elegance was achieved. It includes the original maquette of that tapestry,…The Conversation


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