Did you know that although he is best known for his colourful paintings and cut-outs, Henri Matisse was also a great sculptor? Discover a less-known side of the famous French master, whose sculptures are a milestone in modern art.

An unknown side of the French master

Admission

CHF 23.–/18.– (concessions and groups)
Free admission for members and children and young people under the age of 17. Tip : Senior (AHV) discounts every Wednesday

PLAN YOUR VISIT

Note for groups

We look forward to welcoming you to the Kunsthaus. For organizational reasons, prior registration is required. info@kunsthaus.ch, +41 44 253 84 84

For the first time, this exhibition examines his sculptural work through the prism of the creative process and transformation.

This exhibition focuses on the artistic method Matisse brought to bear in almost all his principal sculptures: starting out from a seemingly naturalistic approach, his figures progressed through increasing degrees of abstraction that culminated in radical stylization. At the same time he captured the key ‘states’ as sculptures in their own right, laying bare the workings of his creative process.

As if by metamorphosis, his bronzes are transformed from a natural to an abstract form. There are parallels with this process in his paintings and drawings, and the exhibition explores the relationship between them for the first time.

More than 70 works by Matisse from all over the world, accompanied by reproductions of historical photographs, films and music, offer a vivid presentation of Matisseʼs artistic method in the large exhibition gallery of the Kunsthaus. Matisse’s various sources of inspiration – nude photographs, originals from African art and Antiquity –complete a focused presentation.

In cooperation with the Musée Matisse, Nice. The exhibition will be taken over after it leaves Zurich.
Curator: Sandra Gianfreda / Co-curator: Claudine Grammont

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Image above:

Edward Steichen, Henri Matisse travaillant à «La Serpentine», 1909, Musée d‘Orsay, Paris. Photo © Musée d‘Orsay, Dist. RMN-Grand Palais / Patrice Schmidt, © The Estate of Edward Steichen / 2019 ProLitteris, Zurich; © Succession Henri Matisse / 2019 ProLitteris, Zurich

« I like to model as much as to paint – I have no preference. » — Henri Matisse, 1912
« I have always wanted my work to have the lightness and joyousness of a springtime that never lets anyone suspect the labors it has cost. » — Henri Matisse, 1948
« Cutting directly into vivid color reminds me of the direct carving of sculptors. » — Henri Matisse, 1947
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Henri Matisse, Jeannette IV, 1910/1911, Musée d‘Orsay, Paris, deposited atMusée Matisse, Nice, gift of Mme Jean Matisse, 1978, photo: François Fernandez, © Succession Henri Matisse/2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Studio of Matisse in the former Hôtel Regina in Cimiez, Nice, 1953, Archives Henri Matisse, Issy-les-Moulineaux, © Succession Henri Matisse/2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Henri Matisse, Jeannette V, 1916, Musée d‘Orsay, Paris, deposited atMusée Matisse, Nice, gift of Mme Jean Matisse, 1978, photo: François Fernandez, © Succession Henri Matisse/2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Henri Matisse, Woman Leaning on her Hands, 1905, gift of Madame Jean Matisse to the French State on deposit at the Musée Matisse, Nice, 1978, Musée d’Orsay, Paris, © Succession Henri Matisse / 2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Matisse working from The Back II to The Back III, Issy-les-Moulineaux, 1913, photo: Alvin Langdon Coburn, Courtesy of the George Eastman Museum, © Succession Henri Matisse / 2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Yoruba peoples, Nigeria, Gelede mask, early 20th century, Private collection, former collection of Henri Matisse, © Succession Henri Matisse / 2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Henri Matisse, Nu de dos I, 1908–1909, Kunsthaus Zürich, 1960, © Succession Henri Matisse / 2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Henri Matisse, Nu couché de dos, 1944, Musée Matisse, Nice. photo: François Fernandez, © Succession Henri Matisse/2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Henri Matisse, Le serf, 1900–03, Musée Matisse, Nice, bequest of Madame Henri Matisse, 1960© Succession Henri Matisse/2019 ProLitteris, Zurich
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Henri Matisse, Nu bleu I, 1952, Fondation Beyeler, Riehen/Basel, Beyeler Collection© Succession Henri Matisse/2019 ProLitteris, Zurich

Accompanying programme

Public guided tours

English: Sat 14 September and 12 October 4 p.m.
German: Wed & Thurs 6 p.m., Fri 3 p.m. and Sun 11 a.m. (not 2/30 October)

Dance, talk, lecture and more

Accompanying programme (PDF)

Audioguide for children (in German)

This audioguide teaches children aged 5 to 9 about the differences between two-dimensional and three-dimensional art. They’ll discover why the feline predator devouring a hare is just as caught up in the goings-on as the artist who created it. Meanwhile the youngest kids can try their hand at turning lines into figures with the help of colouring pages.

As well as guided tours and workshops for children and adults, the exhibition is accompanied by a range of other events. ‘Matisse – Metamorphoses. From idea to exhibition’, a conversation with curator Sandra Gianfreda, reveals how it all came about. Karin Minger will be performing a dance dialogue with Matisse’s sculptural metamorphoses in the large exhibition gallery.

Our exhibition audioguides will be available as always. Costing CHF 3 for adults, they’re full of stories about the creative process behind the works and offer an in-depth insight into Matisse’s artistic method, while a free audioguide for children aged 5 to 9 has been developed specially for our younger visitors.

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Image above:

Edward Steichen, Henri Matisse travaillant à «La Serpentine», 1909, Musée d‘Orsay, Paris. Photo © Musée d‘Orsay, Dist. RMN-Grand Palais / Patrice Schmidt, © The Estate of Edward Steichen / 2019 ProLitteris, Zurich; © Succession Henri Matisse / 2019 ProLitteris, Zurich

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