In this unit of study the students were exposed to
of Henri Matisse. He designed the Rosary Chapel in
The children viewed slides of his chapel and the vestments. They were then given the task of designing new vestments that could be used in a church. The children often commented that Father Senger would look good in their design.
The children created several rough drafts for the vestments as Henri Matisse did. They also painted their own pieces of paper for the main cloth and the collage bits as Matisse did. Matisse was very particular about colour and I wanted the children to be the same. Therefore, we did not use construction paper green, but rather created our own.
The stories and symbols on the vestments are unique, colourful and vibrant. The children’s love of colour is very evident in all the pieces. The children were conscious about the church calendar and knew which colours should pertain to which parts of the church year. However, they made some really strong arguments for new colours of vestments so I let them explore and create.
Who was Henri Matisse?
Matisse, Henri (äNrē' mätēs') , 1869–1954, French painter, sculptor, and lithographer. Along with , Matisse is considered one of the two foremost artists of the modern period. His contribution to 20th-century art is inestimably great.
began to study law and,
during an illness in 1890, took up painting, thereafter forsaking law
He studied first with the academician
and then with Gustave ,
whose studio he met many painters who would soon attain prominence with
the fauvist movement. Matisse's earliest work was exceptionally mature.
explored impressionism (e.g., La Desserte, 1897; Niarchos
began exhibiting in
1896 and at first was unsuccessful. In 1905 at Collioure, a
village, he began using pure primary color as a significant structural
His portrait of Mme Matisse, known as The Green Line (1905;
the demise of fauvism Matisse
continued to use color to communicate his joy in bold pattern and
ornament, e.g., in The Moorish Screen (1921; Phila. Mus. of
Art) and Lady
in Blue (1937; private coll.). He experimented frequently with
sorts of expressive abstraction, as in The Blue Nude (1907;
Mus. of Art), Mlle Landsberg (1914; Phila. Mus. of Art), and The
Piano Lesson (1916; Mus. of Modern Art,
reveals an interest in African art and in .
Matisse designed for the ballet (1920, 1938) and illustrated works by
(1944), among many others. His superbly simple line drawings rank among
greatest works of graphic art of the 20th cent. In his last years he
brilliant paper cutouts and stencils (e.g., Jazz, 1947;
Mus. of Art), as gay and as strong in design as his earliest work. When
nearly 80, Matisse volunteered to decorate the Dominican nuns' chapel
largest collections of Matisse's
works are in the Baltimore Museum of Art; Art Institute of Chicago;