Fauvism

Fauvism

Overview

Fauvism is the style of les Fauves (French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 for "the wild beasts"), a short-lived and loose group of early twentieth-century Modern art
Modern art
Modern art includes artistic works produced during the period extending roughly from the 1860s to the 1970s, and denotes the style and philosophy of the art produced during that era. The term is usually associated with art in which the traditions of the past have been thrown aside in a spirit of...

ists whose works emphasized painterly
Painterly
Painterliness is a translation of the German term , a word popularized by Swiss art historian Heinrich Wölfflin in order to help focus, enrich and standardize the terms being used by art historians of his time to characterize works of art...

 qualities and strong colour over the representational
Representation (arts)
Representation is the use of signs that stand in for and take the place of something else. It is through representation that people organize the world and reality through the act of naming its elements...

 or realistic
Realism (visual arts)
Realism in the visual arts is a style that depicts the actuality of what the eyes can see. The term is used in different senses in art history; it may mean the same as illusionism, the representation of subjects with visual mimesis or verisimilitude, or may mean an emphasis on the actuality of...

 values retained by Impressionism
Impressionism
Impressionism was a 19th-century art movement that originated with a group of Paris-based artists whose independent exhibitions brought them to prominence during the 1870s and 1880s...

. While Fauvism as a style began around 1900 and continued beyond 1910, the movement
Art movement
An art movement is a tendency or style in art with a specific common philosophy or goal, followed by a group of artists during a restricted period of time, or, at least, with the heyday of the movement defined within a number of years...

 as such lasted only a few years, 1904–1908, and had three exhibitions.
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Encyclopedia

Fauvism is the style of les Fauves (French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 for "the wild beasts"), a short-lived and loose group of early twentieth-century Modern art
Modern art
Modern art includes artistic works produced during the period extending roughly from the 1860s to the 1970s, and denotes the style and philosophy of the art produced during that era. The term is usually associated with art in which the traditions of the past have been thrown aside in a spirit of...

ists whose works emphasized painterly
Painterly
Painterliness is a translation of the German term , a word popularized by Swiss art historian Heinrich Wölfflin in order to help focus, enrich and standardize the terms being used by art historians of his time to characterize works of art...

 qualities and strong colour over the representational
Representation (arts)
Representation is the use of signs that stand in for and take the place of something else. It is through representation that people organize the world and reality through the act of naming its elements...

 or realistic
Realism (visual arts)
Realism in the visual arts is a style that depicts the actuality of what the eyes can see. The term is used in different senses in art history; it may mean the same as illusionism, the representation of subjects with visual mimesis or verisimilitude, or may mean an emphasis on the actuality of...

 values retained by Impressionism
Impressionism
Impressionism was a 19th-century art movement that originated with a group of Paris-based artists whose independent exhibitions brought them to prominence during the 1870s and 1880s...

. While Fauvism as a style began around 1900 and continued beyond 1910, the movement
Art movement
An art movement is a tendency or style in art with a specific common philosophy or goal, followed by a group of artists during a restricted period of time, or, at least, with the heyday of the movement defined within a number of years...

 as such lasted only a few years, 1904–1908, and had three exhibitions. The leaders of the movement were Henri Matisse
Henri Matisse
Henri Matisse was a French artist, known for his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship. He was a draughtsman, printmaker, and sculptor, but is known primarily as a painter...

 and André Derain
André Derain
André Derain was a French artist, painter, sculptor and co-founder of Fauvism with Henri Matisse.-Early years:...

.

Artists and style


Besides Matisse and Derain, other artists included Albert Marquet
Albert Marquet
Albert Marquet was a French painter, associated with the Fauvist movement.-Life and work:Marquet was born in 1875 at Bordeaux. In 1890 he moved to Paris to attend the Ecole des Arts Decoratifs, where he met Henri Matisse. They were roommates for a time, and they influenced each other's work...

, Charles Camoin
Charles Camoin
Charles Camoin[p] was a French painter associated with the Fauves.Born in Marseille, France, Camoin met Henri Matisse in Gustave Moreau's class at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris...

, Louis Valtat
Louis Valtat
Louis Valtat[p] was a French painter associated with the Fauves.Valtat is noted as a key link that accounts for the stylistic transition in painting from Monet to Matisse....

, the Belgian painter Henri Evenepoel
Henri Evenepoel
Henri-Jacques-Edouard Evenepoel was a Belgian artist whose most important works are associated with Fauvism. He first studied art in Brussels at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts between 1889 and 1890, and entered Paris's Ecole des Beaux-Arts in 1892...

, Maurice Marinot
Maurice Marinot
Maurice Marinot was a French artist. He was a painter considered a member of Les Fauves, and then a major artist in glass....

, Jean Puy
Jean Puy
Jean Puy was a French Fauvist artist. He studied architecture in Lyon and painting with Jean-Paul Laurens at l'Académie Julian between 1897 and 1898. He met Henri Matisse and other like-minded artists when he transferred to the l'Academie Carriere in 1899...

, Maurice de Vlaminck
Maurice de Vlaminck
Maurice de Vlaminck was a French painter. Along with André Derain and Henri Matisse he is considered one of the principal figures in the Fauve movement, a group of modern artists who from 1904 to 1908 were united in their use of intense color.-Life:Maurice de Vlaminck was born in Paris to a family...

, Henri Manguin
Henri Manguin
Henri Charles Manguin[p] was a French painter, associated with Les Fauves.Manguin entered the Ecole des Beaux-Arts to study under Gustave Moreau, as did Matisse and Charles Camoin with whom he became close friends...

, Raoul Dufy
Raoul Dufy
Raoul Dufy[p] was a French Fauvist painter. He developed a colorful, decorative style that became fashionable for designs of ceramics and textiles, as well as decorative schemes for public buildings. He is noted for scenes of open-air social events...

, Othon Friesz
Othon Friesz
Achille-Émile Othon Friesz who later called himself just Othon Friesz , a native of Le Havre, was a French artist of the Fauvist movement....

, Georges Rouault
Georges Rouault
Georges Henri Rouault[p] was a French Fauvist and Expressionist painter, and printmaker in lithography and etching.-Childhood and education:Rouault was born in Paris into a poor family...

, the Dutch painter Kees van Dongen
Kees van Dongen
Cornelis Theodorus Maria van Dongen , usually known as Kees van Dongen or just Van Dongen, was a Dutch painter and one of the Fauves. He gained a reputation for his sensuous, at times garish, portraits....

, the Swiss painter Alice Bailly
Alice Bailly
Alice Bailly was a radical Swiss painter, known for her interpretation of cubism and her multimedia wool paintings.-Education and early career:...

, and Georges Braque
Georges Braque
Georges Braque[p] was a major 20th century French painter and sculptor who, along with Pablo Picasso, developed the art style known as Cubism.-Early Life:...

 (subsequently Picasso's partner in Cubism
Cubism
Cubism was a 20th century avant-garde art movement, pioneered by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque, that revolutionized European painting and sculpture, and inspired related movements in music, literature and architecture...

).

The paintings of the Fauves were characterised by seemingly wild brush work and strident colours, while their subject matter had a high degree of simplification and abstraction
Abstract art
Abstract art uses a visual language of form, color and line to create a composition which may exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world. Western art had been, from the Renaissance up to the middle of the 19th century, underpinned by the logic of perspective and an...

. Fauvism can be classified as an extreme development of Van Gogh
Vincent van Gogh
Vincent Willem van Gogh , and used Brabant dialect in his writing; it is therefore likely that he himself pronounced his name with a Brabant accent: , with a voiced V and palatalized G and gh. In France, where much of his work was produced, it is...

's Post-Impressionism
Post-Impressionism
Post-Impressionism is the term coined by the British artist and art critic Roger Fry in 1910 to describe the development of French art since Manet. Fry used the term when he organized the 1910 exhibition Manet and Post-Impressionism...

 fused with the pointillism
Pointillism
Pointillism is a technique of painting in which small, distinct dots of pure color are applied in patterns to form an image. Georges Seurat developed the technique in 1886, branching from Impressionism. The term Pointillism was first coined by art critics in the late 1880s to ridicule the works...

 of Seurat
Georges-Pierre Seurat
Georges-Pierre Seurat was a French Post-Impressionist painter and draftsman. He is noted for his innovative use of drawing media and for devising a technique of painting known as pointillism...

 and other Neo-Impressionist
Neo-impressionism
Neo-impressionism was coined by French art critic Félix Fénéon in 1886 to describe an art movement founded by Georges Seurat. Seurat’s greatest masterpiece, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte, marked the beginning of this movement when it first made its appearance at an exhibition...

 painters, in particular Paul Signac
Paul Signac
Paul Signac was a French neo-impressionist painter who, working with Georges Seurat, helped develop the pointillist style.-Biography:Paul Victor Jules Signac was born in Paris on 11 November 1863...

. Other key influences were Paul Cézanne
Paul Cézanne
Paul Cézanne was a French artist and Post-Impressionist painter whose work laid the foundations of the transition from the 19th century conception of artistic endeavour to a new and radically different world of art in the 20th century. Cézanne can be said to form the bridge between late 19th...

 and Paul Gauguin
Paul Gauguin
Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin was a leading French Post-Impressionist artist. He was an important figure in the Symbolist movement as a painter, sculptor, print-maker, ceramist, and writer...

, whose employment of areas of saturated colour—notably in paintings from Tahiti—strongly influenced Derain's work at Collioure in 1905. In 1888 Gauguin had said to Paul Sérusier
Paul Sérusier
Paul Sérusier was a French painter who was a pioneer of abstract art and an inspiration for the avant-garde Nabi movement, Synthetism and Cloisonnism.- Education :...

:
Fauvism can also be seen as a mode of Expressionism
Expressionism
Expressionism was a modernist movement, initially in poetry and painting, originating in Germany at the beginning of the 20th century. Its typical trait is to present the world solely from a subjective perspective, distorting it radically for emotional effect in order to evoke moods or ideas...

.

Origins





Gustave Moreau
Gustave Moreau
Gustave Moreau was a French Symbolist painter whose main emphasis was the illustration of biblical and mythological figures. As a painter of literary ideas, Moreau appealed to the imaginations of some Symbolist writers and artists.- Biography :Moreau was born in Paris. His father, Louis Jean Marie...

 was the movement's inspirational teacher; a controversial professor at the École des Beaux-Arts
École des Beaux-Arts
École des Beaux-Arts refers to a number of influential art schools in France. The most famous is the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, now located on the left bank in Paris, across the Seine from the Louvre, in the 6th arrondissement. The school has a history spanning more than 350 years,...

 in Paris and a Symbolist painter, he taught Matisse, Marquet, Manguin, Rouault and Camoin during the 1890s, and was viewed by critics as the group's philosophical leader until Matisse was recognized as such in 1904. Moreau's broad-mindedness, originality and affirmation of the expressive potency of pure colour was inspirational for his students. Matisse said of him, "He did not set us on the right roads, but off the roads. He disturbed our complacency." This source of empathy was taken away with Moreau's death in 1898, but the artists discovered other catalysts for their development.

In 1896, Matisse, then an unknown art student, visited the artist John Peter Russell
John Peter Russell
John Peter Russell was an Australian impressionist painter.-Life and work:John Peter Russell was born at the Sydney suburb of Darlinghurst, the eldest of four children of John Russell, a Scottish engineer, his wife Charlotte Elizabeth, née Nicholl, from London. J. P. Russell was a nephew of Sir...

 on the island of Belle Île
Belle Île
Belle-Île or Belle-Île-en-Mer is a French island off the coast of Brittany in the département of Morbihan, and the largest of Brittany's islands. It is 14 km from the Quiberon peninsula.Administratively, the island forms a canton: the canton of Belle-Île...

 off Brittany
Brittany
Brittany is a cultural and administrative region in the north-west of France. Previously a kingdom and then a duchy, Brittany was united to the Kingdom of France in 1532 as a province. Brittany has also been referred to as Less, Lesser or Little Britain...

. Russell was an Impressionist
Impressionism
Impressionism was a 19th-century art movement that originated with a group of Paris-based artists whose independent exhibitions brought them to prominence during the 1870s and 1880s...

 painter; Matisse had never previously seen an Impressionist work directly, and was so shocked at the style that he left after ten days, saying, "I couldn't stand it any more." The next year he returned as Russell's student and abandoned his earth-coloured palette for bright Impressionist colours, later stating, "Russell was my teacher, and Russell explained colour theory to me." Russell had been a close friend of Vincent van Gogh
Vincent van Gogh
Vincent Willem van Gogh , and used Brabant dialect in his writing; it is therefore likely that he himself pronounced his name with a Brabant accent: , with a voiced V and palatalized G and gh. In France, where much of his work was produced, it is...

 and gave Matisse a Van Gogh drawing.

In 1901, Maurice de Vlaminck
Maurice de Vlaminck
Maurice de Vlaminck was a French painter. Along with André Derain and Henri Matisse he is considered one of the principal figures in the Fauve movement, a group of modern artists who from 1904 to 1908 were united in their use of intense color.-Life:Maurice de Vlaminck was born in Paris to a family...

 encountered the work of Van Gogh
Vincent van Gogh
Vincent Willem van Gogh , and used Brabant dialect in his writing; it is therefore likely that he himself pronounced his name with a Brabant accent: , with a voiced V and palatalized G and gh. In France, where much of his work was produced, it is...

 for the first time at an exhibition, declaring soon after that he loved Van Gogh more than his own father; he started to work by squeezing paint directly onto the canvas from the tube.

In parallel with the artists' discovery of contemporary avant-garde art came an appreciation of pre-Renaissance
Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

 French art, which was shown in a 1904 exhibition, French Primitives. Another aesthetic feeding into their work was African sculpture, which Vlaminck, Derain and Matisse were early collectors of.

Many of the Fauve characteristics first cohered in Matisse's painting, Luxe, Calme et Volupté
Luxe, Calme et Volupté
Luxe, Calme et Volupté is an oil painting by Henri Matisse. It was painted in 1904, after a summer spent working in St. Tropez on the French Riviera alongside the neo-Impressionist painters Paul Signac and Henri Edmond Cross...

("Luxury, Calm and Pleasure"), which he painted in the summer of 1904, whilst in Saint-Tropez
Saint-Tropez
Saint-Tropez is a town, 104 km to the east of Marseille, in the Var department of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region of southeastern France. It is also the principal town in the canton of Saint-Tropez....

 with Paul Signac
Paul Signac
Paul Signac was a French neo-impressionist painter who, working with Georges Seurat, helped develop the pointillist style.-Biography:Paul Victor Jules Signac was born in Paris on 11 November 1863...

 and Henri-Edmond Cross
Henri-Edmond Cross
Henri-Edmond Cross was a French pointillist painter.- Life and career :Cross was born in Douai and grew up in Lille. He studied at the École des Beaux-Arts. His early works, portraits and still lifes, were in the dark colors of realism, but after meeting with Claude Monet in 1883, he painted in...

.

Salon D'Automne 1905


The artists shared their first exhibition at the 1905 Salon d'Automne
Salon d'Automne
In 1903, the first Salon d'Automne was organized by Georges Rouault, André Derain, Henri Matisse, Angele Delasalle and Albert Marquet as a reaction to the conservative policies of the official Paris Salon...

. The group gained their name, after critic Louis Vauxcelles
Louis Vauxcelles
Louis Vauxcelles was an influential French art critic. He is credited with coining the terms Fauvism , and Cubism ....

 described their show of work with the phrase "Donatello
Donatello
Donato di Niccolò di Betto Bardi , also known as Donatello, was an early Renaissance Italian artist and sculptor from Florence...

 au milieu des fauves!" ("Donatello among the wild beasts"), contrasting the paintings with a Renaissance
Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

-type sculpture that shared the room with them. Henri Rousseau
Henri Rousseau
Henri Julien Félix Rousseau was a French Post-Impressionist painter in the Naïve or Primitive manner. He was also known as Le Douanier , a humorous description of his occupation as a toll collector...

 was not a Fauve, but his large jungle scene The Hungry Lion Throws Itself on the Antelope
The Hungry Lion Throws Itself on the Antelope
The Hungry Lion Throws Itself on the Antelope is a large oil-on-canvas painting created by Henri Rousseau in 1905...

was exhibited near Matisse's work and may have had an influence on the pejorative used. Vauxcelles' comment was printed on 17 October 1905 in Gil Blas
Gil Blas (periodical)
Gil Blas was a Parisian literary periodical founded by Augustin-Alexandre Dumont in November 1879. It was in publication until 1914...

, a daily newspaper, and passed into popular usage. The pictures gained considerable condemnation, such as "A pot of paint has been flung in the face of the public" from the critic Camille Mauclair
Camille Mauclair
Séverin Faust , better known by his pseudonym Camille Mauclair, was a French poet, novelist, biographer, travel writer, and art critic....

 (1872–1945), but also some favourable attention. The painting that was singled out for attacks was Matisse's Woman with a Hat
Woman with a Hat
Woman with a Hat is a painting by Henri Matisse from 1905.It is believed that the woman in the painting was Matisse's wife, Amelie....

, which was bought by Gertrude
Gertrude Stein
Gertrude Stein was an American writer, poet and art collector who spent most of her life in France.-Early life:...

 and Leo Stein
Leo Stein
Leo Stein was an American art collector and critic. He was born in Allegheny, Pennsylvania, the older brother of Gertrude Stein. He became an influential promoter of 20th-century paintings. Beginning in 1892, he studied at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, for two years. The...

: this had a very positive effect on Matisse, who was suffering demoralisation from the bad reception of his work.

See also

  • Art history
    Art history
    Art history has historically been understood as the academic study of objects of art in their historical development and stylistic contexts, i.e. genre, design, format, and style...

  • Visual arts
    Visual arts
    The visual arts are art forms that create works which are primarily visual in nature, such as ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, design, crafts, and often modern visual arts and architecture...

  • History of painting
    History of painting
    The history of painting reaches back in time to artifacts from pre-historic humans, and spans all cultures. It represents a continuous, though periodically disrupted tradition from Antiquity. Across cultures, and spanning continents and millennia, the history of painting is an ongoing river of...

  • Western painting
    Western painting
    The history of Western painting represents a continuous, though disrupted, tradition from antiquity. Until the mid-19th century it was primarily concerned with representational and Classical modes of production, after which time more modern, abstract and conceptual forms gained favor.Developments...

  • Neo-Fauvism
    Neo-Fauvism
    Neo-Fauvism was a poetic style of painting from the mid-1920s proposed as a challenge to Surrealism.The magazine Cahiers d'Art was launched in 1926 and its writers mounted a challenge to the Surrealist practice of automatism by seeing it not in terms of unconscious expression, but as another...


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