Matisse’s “Red Studio” travels to Copenhagen

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MoMA “reconstructs” Matisse’s “Red Studio”
Henri Matisse - The Red Studio - 1911

From 13 October 2022 to 26 February 2023, the Statens Museum for Kunst (National Gallery of Denmark) in Copenhagen presents an exhibition focusing on one of Henri Matisse‘s great masterpieces.

Image:  Henri Matisse. “The Red Studio. 1911. Oil on canvas (181 x 219.1 cm, 71 1/4″ x 7′ 2 1/4″). Museum of Modern Art, New York. © Succession H. Matisse/VISDA 2022

Painted in 1911, L’Atelier Rouge” (The Red Studio) is one of the great jewels of the Museum of Modern Art and the most important Matisse in its collection, along with the first version of “The Dance” (1909). The painting -which depicts the artist’s studio in Issy-les-Moulineaux, built in 1909- is immediately recognisable by the intense red colour that pervades the painting. Although the studio depicted is not excessively large, Matisse included in the scene a remarkable number of works of art -both paintings and sculptures- that he had created years before painting “The Red Studio”. The Museum of Modern Art in New York managed to bring together several of the artworks featured in the painting, as well as archival material and other related works that help to contextualise the painting within the artist’s career.

Now 110 years old, ‘The Red Studio’ is both a landmark within the centuries-long tradition of studio paintings and a foundational work of modern art,” said Ann Temkin, Curator of Painting and Sculpture, MoMA. “The picture remains a touchstone for any artist taking on the task of portraying their studio. Matisse’s radical decision to saturate the work’s surface with a layer of red has fascinated generations of scholars and artists. Yet much remains to be explored in terms of the painting’s origin and history.

The exhibition focusing on “L’Atelier Rouge” will be on view in Copenhagen after its run at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, where it was on display from 1 May to 11 September 2022. It includes three paintings from the Statens Museum for Kunst’s own collection.


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