Matisse: The Cut-Outs

We went on a Friday evening trip to Tate Modern to see Henri Matisse:The Cut-Outs, a nice scale of exhibition, some of it deeply familiar, but not all, demonstrating Matisse’s discovery of, and pleasure in, the very simple medium of coloured paper cut out with scissors and then sometimes twirled about to make a pattern and often stuck on a wall:  partly decorative, but done with extreme deliberation, as was evident from the two clips of original film, which showed him as an old man working with purposeful deliberation as he snipped away and ordered exactly how the pieces were to be placed on the wall.   I liked the early experimental work which went into the book Jazz, when the medium was new to him, and the beautiful book covers which he did for a volume of Henri Cartier-Bresson’s photographs, The Decisive Moment, published in 1952, and for the original edition of Alfred Barr’s Matisse:  His Art and His Public, first published in 1951.


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