In the final decades of his life, Matisse invented a new form of art, the cut-out. Working with scissors and sheets of gouache-painted paper, he cut various shapes—from the organic to the geometric—and arranged them into lively compositions. Cut-outs formed the prototypes for the printed images in the illustrated book Jazz, which Matisse insisted remain absolutely faithful to the original colors. In response, the publisher turned to pochoir, a stencil printing technique in which the same gouaches could be used. Matisse created two versions of the prints: one for a portfolio and the second for the illustrated book, whose plates were interspersed with a text by Matisse, written in his looping calligraphy.
Gallery label from “Colllection 1940s—1970s”, 2019