Matisse’s Final Artistic Legacy
A compendium of his revolutionary late-period work, plus a flawless facsimile of Jazz
This two-volume edition includes a perfect facsimile of Matisse's seminal cut-out work. Jazz, the legendary album of twenty color prints with calligraphic text, recognized as a masterpiece among artist books of the 20th century.
The reputation of Henri Matisse (1869–1954) as the most important artist of the modern era is rivaled only by Picasso—who himself said, "All things considered, there is only Matisse." Towards the end of his monumental career as a painter, sculptor, and lithographer, an elderly, sickly Matisse was unable to stand and use a paintbrush for a longer period of time. In this late phase of his life – he was almost 80 years of age – he developed the technique of creating brightly colored paper cut-outs. These gouaches decoupées (gouache cut-outs) represented a revolution in modern art, yet their simplicity was dismissed by many critics as the folly of a senile old man. Later critics realized that Matisse had found a brilliant solution to the age-old conflict between line and color—one that would profoundly influence generations of artists to come.
Printed on paper similar to the 1947 edition, the facsimile volume allows readers to experience Jazz in its original, unbound form.
* Printed in 18 colors on a small offset press, 4 pages at a time, to obtain the highest fidelity to the original
* Printed on Old Mill in 190 g/m² from Italian paper mill Fedrigoni. This paper is of archival quality and has a felt-like softness, much like handmade paper
* As with the original, this reprint is unbound and folded in signatures of 4 pages. It is protected by a French folded jacket and a hard-backed cover
The second volume provides a thorough historical context to Matisse's cut-outs, tracing their roots in his 1930 trip to Tahiti, through to his final years in Nice. Also included are other pivotal works from his later career, including his contributions to Verve magazine and his exquisite decoration of the Vence Chapel. Includes rare and historic photographs by Matisse taken in Tahiti, as well as photos of Matisse by Henri Cartier-Bresson, Brassaï, and the filmmaker Murnau. The text is supplemented by quotations from Matisse, Picasso, E. Tériade (the publisher of Jazz and Verve), the poets Louis Aragon, Henri Michaux, and Pierre Reverdy, and Matisse's son-in-law, Georges Duthuit.