CINEMATISSE at the Matisse Museum
#NICE We know how much photography disrupted the history of painting. We must also imagine the impact of the moving image with the appearance of cinema on painters. Particularly highlighted by Marcel Duchamp’s famous “Nude on the Staircase” and the Italian futurists, it nevertheless influenced many artists and this exhibition has the merit of revealing the mutual relations between Matisse and cinema. How, then, could the painter, often associated with a form of silent serenity, paradoxically take up certain aspects of cinematographic technique?
When Matisse made his first stay there in 1917, Nice was a film city thanks to its many cinemas where the painter showed himself to be an assiduous spectator and especially thanks to the Victorine studios in which he befriended the director and a few extras who were also his models. But it was the meeting with Murnau in 1930, in Tahiti, during the shooting of “Taboo” that left a lasting impression on the painter. In his work, the curves of foliage or waves are captured in their imperceptible transformation, the contours are shifting, and Matisse excels at extracting this dull vibration that emanates from nature but movement, even speed, are at the heart of some of his compositions as in “Les Abeilles” of 1948 or in “Jazz”, all these paintings where he explores the rhythmical potentialities of seriality. But it is also in the interaction of shapes and colours that the canvas finds its dynamism. A landscape “La moulade” from 1907, vibrates with light through the play of complementary colours and the combination of curves and horizontal streaks. Elsewhere, a 1917 painting, “The Windshield” is treated as a cinematographic shot.
However if Matisse was durably marked by the cinema, in return many directors testified of the influence of the painter on their work in particular the filmmakers of the New Wave, Godard, Varda, Demy, Rohmer… The exhibition ends with artists who have taken into account this interaction of cinema and Matisse such as Buraglio, Ange Leccia, Alberola… Cinema is light and Matisse could say: “When I work, it’s cinema. ». Matisse’s light illuminates the Museum.
From 19 September 2019 to 5 January 2020.
Matisse Museum, 164, avenue des Arènes de Cimiez
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