Thursday, 2 February 2012

French, Matisse and Impress

As well as continuing to wrap the contents of my entire house in bubble wrap (well almost) I managed to do some of my favourite things this practise French, and practise the 'less is more' principle in my printmaking after visiting the beautiful exhibition,  "Matisse: Drawing Life" at Brisbane's Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA).

1.  French
Classes resumed this week and the focus this term will be on extending our vocabulary, particularly in relation to  "Food" and "Directions".  Couldn't come at a better time really!

With only huit semaines (8 weeks) before we arrive in Gay Paree, it's comforting to know that Pierre and I will be able to take ourselves off to the local marche and shop for le pain complet, les gateaux, les legumes, le fromage, un poulet roti etc etc confidently.   And with all that 'directional' vocabulary we shouldn't get lost either.  We're really looking forward to exploring all the Parisian arrondissements - more on this in my next post.
Alliance Francaise de Brisbane
2.  Matisse
Henri Matisse was a master of elegant, simple lines (among other things)..........and the GOMA exhibition brings together an extraordinary number of his working sketches, drawings, etchings, lithographs, linocuts, screenprints et al.

His portraits are simply beautiful - spontaneous, fluid simple and direct....and often executed as simple line drawings or completed with a just few brilliant brush strokes of Indian ink.   Parfait!

I marvelled at his restraint....his works exhibit the principle, 'less is more' parfaitement.   Malheureusement (unfortunately), I have trouble remembering this principle and have ruined many prints by not following it.

I also liked the use of vivid colour in his Jazz series screenprints....scarlet, fuschia, cobalt, lime,
 etc etc punctuated by intense, deep black.............Jazz absolutely 'zings' with colour!

Matisse's colours are repeated in the 'drawing room salon', just outside the exhibition.

This space is furnished with similar props as Matisse used in his villa and studio in Nice.    Here, people can linger in one of the comfy chairs, draw, enjoy un cafe au lait or just gaze across the river to Brisbane city.   Bravo Matisse et GOMA!

As we were leaving we walked through Yayoi Kusama's midnight flowers.  Wow!!!!!!!  This is great impact colour - you can't help but smile when you see these works.
Yayoi Kusama - as you can see, Yayoi is no shrinking violet!

3.  Impress
And lastly, I took myself off to Impress (a fab place to print) to proof some new collagraph plates.  

Lots to develop and think about here.......but I enjoy working with collagraphs - they're cheap and safe to make, give rich, textural marks when printed and are a lovely piece in their own right.

Voila!  More on Parisian arrondissements in my next post.


  1. Another fabulous post Robyn. Your collagraphs are exquisite! You must really be counting down now.


  2. I'm sure you will love it! Impossible not to love almost everything about Paris. Hope the move is smooth and not too cold when you touch down. Bon courage!

    1. Hi Catherine...thanks for visiting my blog...yes, I'm sure I will love it - I'm certainly going to give it my best shot! Cold is excuse to wear a great coat, scarf and boots! And good luck with the launch of your book this year......Ciao.

  3. Wonderful blog & good post.Its really helpful for me, awaiting for more new post. Keep Blogging!
    Midnight Flowers