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Henri Matisse

Henri Matisse was born in France in 1869. His father sold seeds and grain and his mother was a dressmaker. At the age of 20 Henri was studying to be a lawyer when he became very ill. He had to have surgery and was bedridden. Henri was very bored just lying around so his mother gave him a box of paints and brushes so he would have something to do. When he recovered he did not want to go back to law school, instead,  straight to art school!

Matisse was so good at painting that the school didn’t help him so he decided to open his own school and show other artists how he painted. Art critics thought Henri and his friends painted like “Fauves” (a French word for wild beasts) because they used bold bright and unusual colors. Critics thought the “Fauvists” would never be successful artists, but they were wrong. Henri Matisse worked on his art for over 60 years and became one of the greatest artists of all time! Throughout his lifetime, he suffered from poor health, but that never stopped him from creating art! Many pictures were painted from his sick bed so they show the inside of his room and a view of the outdoors through an open window, the rooms had patterned wallpaper, curtains, tablecloths and many everyday objects, there was so much to look at in Matisse’s pictures! He used rich colors and shapes and loved to paint people too. Henri was also known for trying a new style by painting paper and then cutting it out and pasting it into the painting.

Matisse was married and had three children. He loved to travel and explore other countries and often was influenced by those cultures and their folk art. He died in 1954 he was 85!


Wild Still Life with Hari Matisse

Students will learn and examine Henri Mattisse's works and create their own art work inspired by him.

Vocabulary: Fauvism, Expressionism Complimentary color, cool and warm color

Element of Art: Line, Shape, Color, Texture/Pattern

Principle of Design: Emphases, Balance, Unity and Variety

Essential Questions:Who is Henri Matisse? What is Expressionism and Fauvism? What is the meaning of Gold fish?

Below are two examples from student's art

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