Jay Fisher

There is an early picture of Matisse actually working on what we know of as The Serpentine sculpture and we know that Matisse based this pose on a photograph that he got from a series of photographs that were probably made for an artist to work from. And in this case, the photograph that he was looking at just showed a woman posing in a studio leaning on support, but she was definitely a more chunky figure. The sculpture that we end up with is different, she’s become amazingly linear. It’s as if she is changed from sculpture that have modeled volume to one that almost looks like a drawing in space. Again, that’s what fun to participate in as you walk around this sculpture is to begin to see the areas of the sculpture that open up into the space and the areas that are close. So it’s almost like she’s kind of – as you are walking around, she’s kind of turning with you and you see different areas, like that space between her arms and the body.

You see those as opening up into space or closing off. The fluidity of this sculpture with those curving lines is really an amazing thing to experience. I think this is Matisse’s most radical sculpture, we realize it’s simply a model in the studio and it becomes almost this abstraction of a linear rhythm.

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