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2c of blue nude.jpg and 2c recline nude.jpg (shared caption across 4col)



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2c of blue nude.jpg and 2c recline nude.jpg (shared caption across 4col)

In early 1907, an accident in Matisse’s studio spurred the creation of two of his masterworks, the sculpture “Reclining Nude 1 (Aurora),” and the painting, “Blue Nude: Memory of Biskra.” These two works illustrate how Matisse shifted between the two media to solve an artistic problem. Here, he fundamentally reworks the classical nymph theme he had begun a year before. Both works are from the Cone collection, formed by Dr Claribel Cone and Etta Cone of Baltimore, Md. ©2007 Succession H. Matisse, Paris/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

1c serf.jpg

Henri Matisse, “The Serf,” 1900–03, collection of San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, bequest of Harriet Lane Levy ©2007 Succession H. Matisse, Paris/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Photos on CD, Typeset copy

FOR 8-10


avv/LSB set 8/2 #708167

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF. — On view through September 16, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) presents the exhibition “Matisse: Painter as Sculptor,” the first major US examination of Henri Matisse’s sculpture in nearly 40 years.

The exhibition features more than 150 works in a variety of media to illustrate the artist’s inventiveness, dexterity and historical significance. Side-by-side presentations of two- and three-dimensional pieces showcase the way themes, imagery and process overlapped in Matisse’s studio practice, while a selection of works by the artist’s peers — including Paul Cezanne, Constantin Brancusi, Edgar Degas, Alberto Giacometti, Pablo Picasso and Auguste Rodin, among other modern masters — provides a vivid context for considering Matisse’s oeuvre.

“Matisse: Painter as Sculptor” is organized thematically around a core group of more than 40 of Matisse’s sculptural masterpieces, which are complemented by a selection of related works on paper, paintings and original photographs of the artist in his studio. These integrated groupings illuminate the evolution of Matisse’s sculptural ideas and his complex creative process.

The exhibition explores how the artist’s drawings may have developed through sculpture an how sculpture may have influenced his painting. Matisse’s bronze sculpture “Reclining Nude I (Aurora),” 1907, appears alongside the painting, “Blue Nude, Memory of Biskra,” 1907, a canvas that the artist was painting during a key and difficult moment in the modeling of the sculpture. The painted and sculpted representations of the reclining female nude evolved together and were inextricably linked.

Other exhibition highlights include the bronze sculptures “Madeleine I,” 1901, and “Madeleine II,” 1903, the five portrait busts of “Jeanette,” 1910–14, and the monumental series of four bronze reliefs known as “The Backs,” 1909–30, Matisse’s most sustained exploration of the reduction and abstraction of the human form.

In conjunction with the exhibition, a fully illustrated catalog, Matisse: The Painter as Sculptor, has been co-produced with Yale University Press.

Following SFMOMA’s presentation, the exhibition will travel to The Baltimore Museum of Art October 28–February 8.

The exhibition was jointly organized by The Baltimore Museum of Art, the Dallas Museum of Art and the Nasher Sculpture Center.

The museum is at 151 Third Street. For information, www.sfmoma.org or 415-357-4000.

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