A colourful Circus

By Aurégane Denis

Once upon a time, Somewhere, between the rigours of science and the infinite creativity of art, was born a colourful artistic movement. Science in may ways has clear boundaries of what it is looking to achieve, but art on the other hand has no limits. Yet it can be linked with or even inspired by science, simply because of its freedom. The complementary colours in the scientific colour wheel is the perfect exemple of science classifying and creating sense from our surrounding.

Im not sure what the link is here between science and fauvism. think u need ot explain this???

Visual Arts were the playground of fauvism (early 20th century works characterised by strong colours and fierce brushwork) artists like Maggie Laubser and André Derain, but playing with colours was Henri Matisse’s speciality, almost like a gift. In a world where visual artists have everything they need in profusion to inspire themselves, we are the spectators that have the chance to observe the magical result of these complex minds. Find out more in A Colourful Circus

What makes spring so special? The Colours. They return after a long, cold winter to give life back to our floral landscapes. Nature is alive with colours, as are we. Seeing the empty tree branches being newly filled with a vivid green invites the singing birds back within the branches. It’s earth’s rituals, every year we live the same spectacle. In our minds, colours have meaning and represent different things. If you think about the colour green, what comes to mind would be something natural like woods, leaves, and grass. Thinking about red on the other hand brings some warm ideas like fire, sunsets, passion, and blood. Colours we know, have deep significance.

Henri Matisse “Woman with a Veil”

What Fauvist artists chose to do is to ignore colour’s formal significations and use them in surprising ways by letting their imagination flow through their hands. In this way, they created a new movement by playing with complementary colours in the scientific colour wheel. Henry Matisse was the father of this movement with his ‘scandalous’ painting “La femme au Chapeau” released in 1905. When the public discovered how he played with colours like putting green on the woman’s painted face, they felt the art was aggressive and named the paintings room in the museum “la cage des fauves” (the cage of the beasts). By playing with colours they gained their name, “les Fauves”. 

Henri Matisse “Woman In Blue”

Painting a river yellow and trees in red was their way to make us see the world through their eyes. It was wild and boundaries free. Colours do have significance but experiencing the traditional technique ‘back to front’ was like eating the forbidden too tempting apple. For them, It wasn’t a way to picture earth realistically, but to ascent to a new colourful Eden Garden. 

Henri Matisse “Window At Tahiti II”

The world is filled with rules, people are trying to put things into specific boxes and telling each other what they should fit in. The Fauvism movement was like a revolution against fitting everything in the same order. It was a freeing perception of our world permitting us to picture it differently. For example, the opposite of green on the colour wheel is purple and the opposite of red is light blue. What the fauvist artists did was mix those opposite colours to create an out of the ordinary vision of our green and blue world. They made you travel through paintings and put forward their eccentric ideas without being afraid to step outside the box. 

Henri Matisse “Large Reclining Nude”

Now imagine three museums collaborating to offer you a unique immersive experience in this realm of colours. In this cultural trio, we will find two french museums, the Musée Matisse in Nice and the Musée de L’orangerie in Paris. Enjoy more than a hundred works made by one of the giants of twentieth-century art, Henri Matisse, focussing on his works from the 1930s. The luckiest may have the chance to visit this exposition taking place in the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the third collaborating museum, starting the 19th of October 2002 until January 29, 2023. If you find this colourful Art attractive, then let’s visit this exotic garden blooming in Philadelphia. You could find some well-known and rarely seen paintings but also sculptures, drawings and prints.

If you would like to know more about the exposition in Philadelphia, then click here

Also, If you enjoyed reading A colourful Circus, you might also appreciate Once Upon a Time

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