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Henri Matisse : Contre vents et marées, peinture et livres illustrés de 1939 à 1943 Relié – 1 décembre 1996
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com
Amazon.com: 1 commentaires
Very Hard-to-Find but Exceptionally Beautiful Book
22 février 2006 - Publié sur Amazon.com
5 personnes ont trouvé cela utile.
All true admirers of French artist Henri Matisse should take the time to acquire (or at least look at) this very rare volume. One of the most beautiful art books ever published in France (and in this reviewer's opinion, the most beautiful book ever published on this artist), "Contre Vents et Marees" (meaning, "Against Winds and Storms") is the most extensive work to date on Matisse's work during the period of his so-called "Second Life," of the early 1940s - the period when he not only executed some of his most extraordinary paintings, but also completed the famous "Themes and Variations" suite of drawings as well as beginning work on the "Jazz" suite of paper cut-outs. The author (who died in 1998 at the age of 87) was a 20-year-old White Russian immigrant living in Paris when she met the man who would change her life and make her face immortal in 20th century art. A chance meeting on a Paris bus with another Russian immigrant led her to Matisse's door. Taken on as a temporary studio assistant, she at first only worked for Henri Matisse for a few weeks before being formally engaged as a live-in nursemaid, secretary and companion to Madame Amelie Matisse. At this time, Matisse apparently ceased to take any interest in her. About a year into her employment, she was standing on a stool in Matisse's library getting some books off the shelves for his invalid wife's reading pleasure, when the artist suddenly said, "Stop. Don't move!" and drew a few quick sketches of her for his own pleasure. And thus began one of the most fascinating artist-model relationships of the 20th century. By 1935, Miss Delectorskaya was Matisse's regular model, posing for such famous works as the highly simplified "Pink Nude." As the thirties wound on, her status in the household gradually altered as Matisse himself placed more and more responsibility on her young and lovely shoulders. By 1939, Miss Delectorskaya was Matisse's regular model, studio assistant, and general factotum and had no further contact with Matisse's wife. By 1940, Matisse and his wife had formally separated, and Miss Delectorskaya was elevated to the official position of Matisse's housekeeper among her other duties, becoming known among Matisse's servants and relations as "Madame Lydia." Madame Lydia would remain by Matisse's side until his death in 1954, exercising all the functions of a wife for the great artist, and enabling him to devote himself totally to his art. Without her, the great flowering of Matisse's art in the 1940s would never have occurred, and the world would have been much the poorer. In this book, Madame Lydia assembles literary and photographic documentation to reconstruct Matisse's life and work during the turbulent years of 1939-1943. All of Matisse's paintings, drawings, book illustrations and engravings which he produced during this period are published in this book, many in full-page color plates. In addition, many color and duotone photographs of Matisse's rooms, props and household are reproduced. For Matisse scholars, this book is a treasure trove of information about a rather under-appreciated period of his life and oeuvre. Physically, the book is a joy to behold - the standard of reproduction is the highest I have ever seen, the paper is heavy, glossy and acid-free, and the design and layout are second to none. Although the text (which contains many insights into Matisse's daily life, working methods, and practice, along with the amazing adventure story of his flight in "the Exodus" after the declaration of war in September 1939) is in French, it is the pictures that tell the story. Madame Lydia's visage was worthy of immoralization in art - her perfect oval face, long blue eyes, flawless complexion and brunette locks occur over and over again throughout the works themselves, like 1939's "Music" and the Themes and Variations drawings from 1941. Here, one sees the true meaning of artistic inspiration and collaboration. Her beauty made Matisse reach deeper into himself to produce works of unprecedented grace and elegance in a dark era of war and massacre. Whether or not Madame Lydia and Matisse were lovers in a physical sense is unknown, but the love that grew up between them brought great art into the world, and thus, all who love great art should find this book.