Music1910 by Henri Matisse
Music forms a pair with The Dance, also painted in 1910. After the collector Sergey Shchukin commissioned The Dance, he wrote to Matisse asking for another panel on the subject of music. It is only when seen together that they acquire their full resonance. Matisse worked on the huge canvas for Music without preparatory sketches and rethought the composition numerous times. The canvas thus bears the traces of numerous alterations, and we can almost trace all the steps in the artist's difficult search for the desired effect. Once complete, the central idea of the Shchukin ensemble was man's achievement of a state of completeness through passionate immersion in creativity. Music is built up of the same 3 elements as The Dance: the same expressive harmony of green, red and blue; the 5 simplified figures of musicians and singers accord with the 5 dancers; as in The Dance, Man is one with Earth and Heaven. He has mounted the hill, torn himself away... (http://art-matisse.com/1910_4.html)
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