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The Red Studio, fall 1911
|Artist||Matisse, Henri||This is the most abstract of three large interior views if his studio the artist did in 1911, and it perhaps the flattest easel painting done anywhere up to that time. The uniform burnt sienna of floor and walls maintains the entire picture on a single frontal plane, depth being diagrammed in linear perspective, but hardly represented otherwise. The tension between thee schematic illusion, which has a curious vividness, and the warm and insistent physical surface makes the picture’s drama. The device of joining top to bottom and background to foreground by a tract of flat colour, sometimes covering only part of the picture will be seen again in many of Matisse’s most ambitious and successful paintings, particularly in 1915 and 1916, and 1947 and 1947.
The pigment does not coat the surface, but is soaked into it so that the very fabric becomes the paint surface. Matisse is, as always, indifferent to paint surface as an end in itself, and generally shuns both impasto and translucent film if he can get what he wants by more purely pictorial means.
|Institution||Museum of Modern Art, New York City|
|Medium||Oil on canvas|
|Dimensions||181 x 219.1 cm|