Fauvism Art Movement

France, 1898 - 1909

Fauvism Art Movement, History, Fauvist Oil Paintings & Artists.

The Fauvism art movement was the first radical art movement. Fauvism influenced German Expressionism, and both are known for their striking colors and techniques. This movement was one of the first examples of abstract art with the addition of intense color. While Fauvism did start in 1898, its history was only a movement between 1904 and 1908 and had only three exhibitions. Fauvism turned out to be an important forerunner to Cubism and Expressionism as well as a touchstone for future modes of abstraction.

Expression of feeling through color. It's all about the color.

The movement focused on the expression of feelings through intense color. Through clashing, conflicting colors, distorted forms, alien perspectives, harsh brushstrokes, and flat linear patterns on canvas oil paintings that weren't always completely covered, the Fauves were able to achieve this. Fauvism's radical goal of isolating color from its descriptive narrative of the subject and representational purpose and allowing it to exist on the canvas as a free component. This was one of the many original ideas it brought to the art world. Different colors could project a mood and establish a structure inside the work of art without having to be consistent with the world outside. For example, a tree no longer needed to be green or brown, it could be blue.

Fauvism has its initial roots in the lessons of a motivational yet controversial teacher at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, Gustave Moreau. He was a Symbolist painter until his death in 1898, and with Henri Matisse’s leadership in 1904, it became a thing. Many of the Fauvist movement’s artists were Moreau's students. He taught originality, expression through color, and to have an open mind.

In 1896, while Matisse was still an understudy of Moreau, Matisse visited John Peter Russell, an Australian Impressionist painter living on a remote island off the shore of France. This was the first time Matisse had seen Impressionist artwork and the style stunned him. He left the island after 10 days because he could not stand to look at the impressionist works any longer. However, he returned a year later prepared to relinquish his distinctive palette. He would learn color theory from Russell and the use of the brighter colors preferred by the Impressionists. Russell also gave him a gift from an unknown, obscure artist, a Van Gogh painting. Van Gogh had been a lifelong friend of his.

Moreau's philosophy focused on breaking the limits of the mind. This was because things did not need to appear as one would normally think. The intense technique learned from Russell laid the groundwork for the style of Matisse. The first genuine Fauvist painting was completed by Matisse in the summer of 1904. Matisse's masterpiece is the illustrative Fauvist painting Le Bonheur de Vivre.

Les Fauves, French for "the wild beasts."

Matisse worked with Andre Derain for the summer of 1905 in a Mediterranean village where they created an assemblage of works to show at the Salon d’Automne. Matisse's travels to Morocco acquired new thoughts about color and pattern that surfaced in works like The Green Line (Portrait of Madame Matisse) and The Blue Nude (Souvenir of Biskra), with their simplified features and angular limbs inspired by African sculpture, of which Maurice de Vlaminck, Derain, and Matisse were early collectors.

The art critic, Louis Vauxcelles, disliked the insanely crazy colors of their artworks or their intense and uncongenial execution, and labeled them as Les Fauves, French for "the wild beasts". Matisse and Derain were amused and adopted the name.

Although a lot of their work was disparaged at the time and appeared to the general public to be the work of untalented artists, wealthy collectors like Gertrude Stein conveyed legitimacy to the movement in the eyes of critics.

Other famous Fauvism artists: Georges Braque, Charles Camoin, Marc Chagall, Roger De La Fresnaye, Raoul Dufy, Albert Marquet, Joan Miró, Georges Rouault, Kees van Dongen

Partly from: TheArtist.me

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