Looking at Matisse and PicassoBook - 2003
Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso have long been seen as the twin giants of modern art. Despite their rivalry, each came to acknowledge the other as his only true equal: Matisse would eventually say, "Picasso sees everything," while for Picasso, "All things considered, there is only Matisse." This book is one of two produced to accompany a major exhibition on the two artists' work. The first book is the exhibition's 400-page catalogue "Matisse Picasso." "Looking at Matisse and Picasso" is a shorter study, providing a general introduction to the artists and comparing a representative selection of their works. The illustrations have been selected to demonstrate the visual relationships in Matisse's and Picasso's art in a clear and dramatic way, and the brief texts, written by members of the staff of the Museum of Modern Art's Department of Education, vividly illuminate the parallels and resonances in the two men's lives and work. Matisse and Picasso are polar opposites but also complementary figures. Between them they are the originators of many of the most significant innovations of 20th-century painting and sculpture, but their relationship has rarely been explored in all of its closeness and complexity. In spite of their initial rivalry, the two masters eventually acknowledged one another as equals, becoming, in their old age, increasingly important to one another both artistically and personally. From the time of their initial encounters in 1906 in Gertrude and Leo Stein's Paris studio until 1917, they individually produced some of the greatest art of the 20th century and maintained an openly competitive relationship brimming with intense innovation. This period saw them create such works as Picasso's majestic "Woman with a Fan" of 1908 and Matisse's great portrait of his wife of 1913. Matisse responds to Synthetic Cubism in his "Piano Lesson" of 1916 and Picasso comes back in turn with a new, more decorative Cubism in "Three Musicians" of 1921. The 20s saw them grow apart, as Matisse moved from Paris to Nice and Picasso became involved with the Surrealists, but the 30s brought them together again, through their sheer fame and devotion to reality-based art. Their story continues until Matisse's death in 1954, when Picasso paid his friend and colleague tribute in his series "Women of Algiers," of which he said, "When Matisse died, he left his odalisques to me as a legacy."
Publisher: New York, NY : Museum of Modern Art : 2003
Branch Call Number: 759.4 M427g
Characteristics: 72p illus