Afterlife: The Story Of Henri Matisse’s Ivy In Flower

Rarely on View, This Large Cutout from Late in the Artist’s Life Will be Installed for Six Months in the DMA Concourse

In 1952 Henri Matisse was asked to create a stained-glass window for the mausoleum of art collector Albert Lasker, and he took on the project with enthusiasm. His full-scale maquette was made with shapes cut out of painted paper and arranged with the help of assistants. This technique allowed the elderly Matisse to remain productive as an artist in his final years, when he was no longer able to paint. Ivy in Flower is one of the most joyous and exuberant of the large cutout works he made at the end of his life.

“Ivy in Flower is one of the first true masterpieces of European modernism to enter the Museum ’s collection,” said Heather MacDonald, The Lillian and James H. Clark Associate Curator of European Art. “It is an exceptionally beautiful example of Matisse’s late passion for the cutout, which was the central medium for the last decade of his career. It’s both strikingly graphic and incredibly lyrical, a work that has an immediate impact but is subtle enough to invite a long look.” Matisse described the maquette in a letter to his son: “I really think it is very beautiful. It has a new harmony.”

Rarely on view because it is a light-sensitive work on paper, Matisse’s beloved Ivy in Flower is installed in the Concourse through December 11, 2011.

Afterlife: The Story of Henri Matisse’s Ivy in Flower is organized by the Dallas Museum of Art and curated by Dr. MacDonald, who will discuss the installation in a gallery talk on June 15 at 12:15p.m. Additional programs will be scheduled while the work of art is on view. For dates and details, visit

About the Dallas Museum of Art Located in the vibrant Arts District of downtown Dallas, Texas, the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) ranks among the leading art institutions in the country and is distinguished by its innovative exhibitions and groundbreaking educational programs. At the heart of the Museum and its programs is its global collection, which encompasses more than 24,000 works and spans 5,000 years of history, representing a full range of world cultures. Established in 1903, the Museum welcomes approximately 600,000 visitors annually and acts as a catalyst for community creativity, engaging people of all ages and backgrounds with a diverse spectrum of programm ing, from exhibitions and lectures to concerts, literary readings, and dramatic and dance presentations.

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