"This lithograph poster is one of the most important designs
which Matisse made using the system of a cut-paper maquette subsequently
transferred to lithograph stone (by Mourlot to create the poster).
It was created in 1950 by Matisse for his exhibition at the 'Maison
de la Pensée Francaise'. The form of the face was a collage of cut-paper
to which Matisse added his own hand-written text and also a text created
from cutout letters. The maquette was then taken to the Mourlot studio
where it was transferred to lithography.
"The abstracted simplicity of form and the flat areas of colour
pattern which Matisse created with collages of paper during the period
at the beginning of the 1950's mark one of the most inspired moments
in his career as an artist. Rhythms of colour used in a manner which
went far beyond the merely visual had been a vital element of his
art from some 25 years earlier. However it was in the period of the
'cut-paper' compositions that he was able to see a way of taking them
even further into the area of an independent non-descriptive, effectively
abstract, role... All the prints from this 'cut-paper' period were
created by Matisse making a 'maquette', which was then transferred
to lithographic stones at the studio of Mourlot." (Weston)
During the 1950s the renowned French printer, Mourlot Freres, printed
most of the "original" posters of the most important artists
of the day. In 1959 they printed the series "Affiches Originales"
for collectors. They are reduced lithographic versions of the "original"
posters created by the contemporary masters, Picasso,
Chagall, Braque, Matisse,
Miro, Leger, and Dufy.