Calla Lilies, Irises and Mimosas (1913) by Henri Matisse

Calla Lilies, Irises and Mimosas - Henri Matisse - 1913

Artwork Information

TitleCalla Lilies, Irises and Mimosas
ArtistHenri Matisse
Dimensions145.5 x 97 cm
Art MovementPost-Impressionism
Current LocationPushkin Museum, Moscow, Russia

About Calla Lilies, Irises and Mimosas

Henri Matisse’s artwork “Calla Lilies, Irises and Mimosas,” created in 1913, is an oil on canvas piece exemplifying the Post-Impressionism movement. It measures 145.5 x 97 cm and falls under the genre of flower painting. Currently, the artwork is housed at the Pushkin Museum in Moscow, Russia. This composition showcases Matisse’s inclination towards vibrant color and expressive brushwork, characteristic elements of Post-Impressionism that extend beyond the naturalistic depiction of its subjects.

The artwork presents a bouquet of flowers, prominently featuring white calla lilies, richly hued irises, and clusters of yellow mimosas, arranged against a boldly painted background. The use of contrasting colors and prominent outlines is quite evident, with the flowers set atop a dark blue-patterned tablecloth. A sense of depth is created by the varying planes of color, with the curtain, wall, and tablecloth dividing the composition. Matisse’s distinctive style can be seen in the flatness of the color fields, the disregard for accurate perspective, and the decorative approach to portraying the botanical elements. The vivid color palette consists of primary blues and greens, with stark whites used for the calla lilies, creating a visual balance against the warmer tones of the mimosas and the curtain. Overall, “Calla Lilies, Irises and Mimosas” is both a tribute to the beauty of nature and a testament to Matisse’s innovative approach to painting during the early 20th century.

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