Henri Matisse, La Blouse roumaine, 1940. Centre Pompidou, Musée national d’art moderne. Don de l’artiste à l’État, 1953 © Succession H. Matisse Photo © Centre Pompidou, Mnam-Cci / G. Meguerditchian / Dist. RMN-GP
On the occasion of the hundred-and-fiftieth anniversary of the birth of Henri Matisse (1869 - 1954), the Centre Pompidou pays homage to him with the exhibition "Matisse, comme un roman" [Like a novel], with more than two hundred and thirty works and seventy documents and archives. "The importance of an artist is measured by the quantity of new signs he introduces to the plastic language", Matisse remarked. He was a decisive innovator throughout his life. A chronological tour in nine chapters traces the beginnings of the young artist, who came late to painting in the 1890s, to the complete liberation of line and colour with the cut-up gouaches he made in the twilight of his days.