Laurette with a Coffee Cup (1917) by Henri Matisse

Laurette with a Coffee Cup - Henri Matisse - 1917

Artwork Information

TitleLaurette with a Coffee Cup
ArtistHenri Matisse
Art MovementPost-Impressionism

About Laurette with a Coffee Cup

The artwork titled “Laurette with a Coffee Cup,” created by Henri Matisse in 1917, is a representation of the Post-Impressionist movement, specifically within the genre of portraiture. This work reflects Matisse’s interest in capturing the essence of his subjects with boldness and expressiveness, a characteristic often seen in Post-Impressionist works.

In the artwork, a reclined figure, presumably Laurette, is portrayed with a relaxed posture, holding a coffee cup. The color palette is limited yet striking, with the use of bold green for the background which contrasts sharply with the grays and whites of the figure’s clothing and the dark tones of the hair. The representation is not strictly realistic, as it showcases post-impressionistic traits such as simplified details, expressive use of lines, and flattened perspective, which distances the work from naturalism.

Matisse’s brushwork appears to be loose and somewhat fluid, adding a sense of movement to the figure despite its stationary pose. The figure’s facial expression is contemplative or perhaps indifferent, and this ambiguity adds an intriguing psychological element to the portrait. The artwork embodies the innovation and departure from traditional representation that defined Post-Impressionism and exemplifies Matisse’s ability to synthesize form and color to capture the character of his subject.

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