1869 - 1964
Henri Matisse is the founder of Fauvism. If his first studies of faces are very advanced, his work quickly emancipates itself from the detail to concentrate on the essence. Painter of the subtle, his portraits are stylized, sometimes abstract, both legible and mysterious. His sensitivity and delicacy are comparable to those of the great French painters Jean Fouquet and Philippe de Champaigne.
"Matisse, lucid analyst of reality, what nonsense! What is clear in him, without burrs or repentance, is his fervor. (...) Of how many nights is woven the purity of this Eden, his art is too courageous, too haughty to ever make us the confidence. Matisse 'soft and tender'? Like the violent and secret Racine. The French art has its summits, masks willingly of clearness the most lively movements of its passion. That is its strength and its greatness." - Jean Bazaine, 1952.