b. 1869
- d. 1954
  • France
Turnover 2023
$USD 46.022.029
Record Sale
$USD 80.750.000

Henri Matisse attended law school in Paris before studying art at the Académie Julian and the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Although he began painting in a naturalistic style, he created increasingly experimental works after studying the art of the Impressionists, becoming familiar with pointillism and other post-Impressionist expressions that dominated artistic discourse at the turn of the century. Attuned to African and “primitive” art, Matisse began painting using strong colors in broad, flat applications of paint with strong contours, which developed into his mature Fauvist style in the mid-20th century. He exhibited his work at the Salon des Indépendants and the provocative Armory Show of 1913 in New York, and his work was sought after from the start by collectors, including the famous Gertrude Stein.

Between 1914 and 1918, his work became increasingly angular and abstract, sometimes displaying abrupt shifts from naturalism to abstraction in a single work, executed with muted colors; this change in style was believed to reflect his reaction to the First World War. From the 1920s onwards, Matisse divided his time between Paris and the south of France, painting works with loose, fluid forms, vibrant patterns and bright colors, as well as working with scenography and sculpture in addition to painting. After two operations in the 1940s, Matisse began to focus on paper-cutting techniques in collages that he called papiers découpés, a method used in his Jazz series, as well as in projects for various chapels. Considered a great critic during his lifetime, a retrospective of Matisse’s work opened in 1951 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, traveling throughout the United States. In 1952, the Musée Matisse opened in Le Cateau-Cambrésis, Matisse’s hometown in France, two years before the artist’s death in 1954.


Record Sale

Henri MATISSE (1869-1954)
Odalisque couchée aux magnolias (1923)

Lot # 8
60.5 x 81.1 cm
Hammer price: $ 71,500,000
Price including buyer’s premium: $ 80,750,000
The Collection of David and Peggy Rockefeller: 19th & 20th Century Art, Evening Sale
08 may 2018
New York NY, United States.

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