Raised Knee

Henri Matisse • Painting, 1922, 38.3×46.5 cm
About the artwork
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Art form: Painting
Subject and objects: Nude
Technique: Oil
Materials: Canvas
Date of creation: 1922
Size: 38.3×46.5 cm
Artwork in selections: 55 selections

Description of the artwork «Raised Knee»

"Raised Knee" - one of the many Odalisque written by Matisse. Matisse has already gained fame, his exhibitions are held around the world. He remains true to his manifesto: painting should be understandable to anyone, regardless of its penetration into theoretical depths. The task of art is not to embarrass and disturb, but to give bliss, inner balance and pleasure.

Matisse had a significant influence on his work Delacroix. Travel to the East gave both artists inspiration, and Matisse's answer to Algerian Women the famous predecessor was numerous odalisques, one of the symbols of Matisse's painting (1, 2, 3).

All as for selection - slender, with feminine, soft curves, high breasts, rounded hips, smooth lines of the body, its very existence claiming that heaven on earth is achievable. These flowers could grow solely in the atmosphere "Luxury, tranquility and enjoyment".

In the depiction of the odalisques, Matisse found depth, refusing from sharp contrasts favisticheskogo period, from the propensity to primitive methods. Departure from extremes allowed him to find his own measure. "Art does not rest on extremes. This thing is "moderate," he insisted. - Mild than? Yes mind, damn it! But reasoning reasoning. "

The coloring of odalisks is a refined, elegant, non-detonating visual receptors with an instant riot of colors, but involving, enticing the viewer - and not letting go. Matisse himself said that a woman, a vase, and a flower for him are of equal value. Odalisks seem luxurious adornments, beautiful things that delight the look (no, no, didacticism, no reproaches in "soullessness" at Matisse and there is no mention, the point is that the destiny of the Odalisque, as well as the blossoming flowers, is to delight the eye, to testify beauty, be this beauty). And regardless of whether they are depicted naked, semi-naked or dressed, wrapped in the thinnest veil or heavy silk - they fulfill their task.

Odalisks became the straw that broke the last resistance of critics. Art critic, Cubist André Lot After the exhibition in 1923 in the gallery of Bernheim in Paris, he surrendered and admitted: "Matisse is a magician ... At first glance at these lightweight fabrics, like holding a fleeting or scattered touch of your hand, you forget the objections that you wanted to shield him from. You give up, you are defeated ".

This nude, in the lightest gas skirt "Seated Odalisque" is depicted against the background of oriental patterns - a recognizable reference to the struck artist during his travels to the East Moorish ornaments. The very atmosphere of the picture is eastern, the West with its constant race for achievements here is no place. The Odalisque Matisse knows that the essence of life is in enjoying it. At the same time, the sexuality of the odaloks is truly oriental, this is by no means an aggressive statement - the flower does not need to prove that it is a flower.

Odalisque Matisse, of course, echo with odalisks Engra. The key difference between the disclosure of this theme in two masters was elegantly described by Claude Roger-Marx. On the odrags of Ingres: "Is it not a feeling at the sight of his odalisks that he is pierced by desire and his deformations are full of bliss?" (1, 2). About the odalisques of Matisse: “He dominates these living beings, conceived almost like objects, they are attracted not by themselves, but by the picturesque possibilities and the pleasure that they must bring to the viewer ".

One of Matisse's odalisques, "Odalisque in red trousers" participated in the detective story. In 2002, from the Museum of Modern Art in Caracas, the picture was stolen. Disappearance was not discovered immediately, because the attackers replaced the original with a copy. The search was attracted to the FBI, and only 10 years later managed to find that the original is in Miami. Two more years it took to bring the picture back. In the summer of 2014, she was finally exhibited in Venezuela. Matisse left us a lot of odalisks - but we do not agree to be separated from any of them.

Author: Alain Esaulova