Woman in Blue
The sorrow of the king
Le Chant – Fireplace Mural
Large red interior
Homage to Matisse
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Masterpieces from the Centre Pompidou

The internationally renowned modern art museum, Centre Pompidou, owns one of the greatest collections of works by one of the twentieth century’s most remarkable artists – Henri Matisse. The exhibition, Matisse Life & Spirit: Masterpieces from the Centre Pompidou, is the most extensive showing of the artist’s work ever seen in Sydney.

More than one hundred works spanning six decades of Matisse’s creative life, including sculptures, drawings, paintings, his renowned gouache cut-outs, together with rare footage of the artist at work, are on display. Works from the Australian gallery’s permanent collection have also been added to those on loan.

Vivid colours, muscular life-sized bronze reliefs, and the sheer volume of work in this exhibition are a testament to this artist’s extraordinary energy and indomitable spirit. Nearly seven decades after his death, his images are instantly recognisable, relatable, and gloriously alive. It’s impossible not to feel energised after viewing this significant body of work.

Matisse’s creative life (1869-1954) spanned some of the world’s greatest upheavals. He was born in northern France and survived two world wars, only to be stricken by crippling illness in his later years, a period during which many of his most important works were created.

Text & photos Ingrid Piper