Posted by Wendel Swan on January 17, 1999 at 22:34:28:
In Reply to: Similarity? posted by Yon Bard on January 17, 1999 at 11:53:03:
I would like, if I may, to sing harmony with the No-Matisse-Kaitag-Connection chorus.
There are no structural imperatives for the Kaitag work or for Matisse's cutouts, so there is no structural reason for either to resemble anything else.
I don't know what may have inspired the Kaitag embroideries, but I have visited several exhibitions here at the National Gallery and at the Art Institute in Chicago with Matisse's work and I see no connection with any textile or textile tradition.
Matisse, of course, used strong colors throughout his career, although his work evolved and changed as did that of the other great Impressionists. However, he never gave any indication of paying attention to the details in physical objects that are the essence of the Kaitag embroideries.
In his last years, Matisse became physically unable to hold a brush and to paint as he once had; the cutouts were thus born of necessity and imagination.
In The Meanings of Modern Art, John Russell describes how Matisse came to use blocks of color to create his greatest cutout work (Jazz) and the inspiration for the images:
"Sometimes they were images of violent action; sometimes memories of Tahiti come back after 20 years; sometimes fantasy took over after a long lifetime dedicated primarily to fact. The man who largely eschewed pure invention turned out to be haunted by scenes from a Texan rodeo that he had never been to, by sword swallowers form an imaginary circus and fate of Icarus as he fell soundlessly through space."
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