Radicalizing artistic movement in the early twentieth century, Henri Matisse is celebrated along with contemporaries like Picasso for his bold and colorful abstractions. The French artist’s 60-year career spans a variety of media including painting, drawing, costume design, and, in his waning years, printmaking. The 1940s left Matisse confined to a wheelchair due to an illness, and finding it difficult to paint, the artist turned to cutouts. His creative interpretations of French classics, like the Poèmes de Charles d’Orléans, come alive in bright shapes and looping lines at the Columbia Museum of Art in Henri Matisse: Jazz & Poetry on Paper. The exhibit highlights four of his books, including Jazz, a circus-inspired piece focusing on vivid print illustrations derived from cutouts. Matisse’s interplay between visuals and text crafts a reimagined form of literature, allowing viewers a rare glimpse of an alternate, though no less celebrated, side of Henri Matisse’s creative capabilities.
Henri Matisse: Jazz & Poetry on Paper will be on display at the Columbia Museum of Art through January 15, 2018. Located at 1515 Main St, the museum is open Tues–Friday, 11am–5pm, Sat, 10am–5pm, and Sun, Noon–5pm. For more, go to columbiamuseum.org.