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ArtSpotlight

Lifetime Achievement Spotlight

Pierre H. Matisse
Cut-Out Artist

Pierre was born to artist parents in Paris. His father, Jean Matisse was a sculptor and his mother, Louise Milhau was a painter, sculptor and ceramist. As the grandson of Henri Matisse, Pierre grew up immersed in the world of art. Much of his childhood was spent in the artistic circles of Paris and the French Riviera. The Matisse family often moved, from one location to another in France and Spain in his early years. He had the opportunity to meet and spend time among some of the most famous artists of the century: Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Aristide Maillol, Jean Effel, Salvador Dali, Pierre Bonnard, Marcel Duchamp, Henri Matisse, Fernand Leger, Maurice De Vlaminck and Auguste Lumiere.

 

These days, Pierre - better known as the American Matisse - puts all his creative talent and boundless energy to use painting, writing, teaching and redefining an art formally known as cut-outs. Pierre believes that these paper cutouts are one of the purest forms of creativity. The art form was popularized by his grandfather, Henri Matisse, who published a book of such works in 1947 called Jazz. Paper cut artwork has always suffered from the problem of time: the paper was often eaten by the paints and or glues after years of display. However, Pierre has taken the art form to a new level, creating works that are archival in design and quality making them very desirable as an original form of art.

 

Composition and color are everything in a cut-out. Each piece is drawn as a design first (a process requiring anywhere form 200 to 500 drawings to get the final design) then executed in archival papers. It takes a skilled artisan to hand cut and carefully place each piece exactly as the design calls for. Recently, Pierre completed over 100 cutouts as a tribute to the legacy of art passed on to him by his parents and grandfather.

 

As an artist, Pierre has always pursued his work in a generous manner. In the 1970's he created a series of paintings to record the ecology on the St. John's River that is quickly disappearing. He donated the series of Florida landscapes to the Deland Museum where it has become a part of their permanent collection. He has also donated or created commissioned pieces for many other charitable organizations including Project Hope, The American Red Cross, Variety Clubs International, The National Epilepsy Foundation, Music Educators National Conference and Fame, UNICEF Orphans Foundation, The Sunrise Children's Hospital of Las Vegas, The Arnold Palmer Children's Hospital, The Denver Children's Hospital, The Palm Beach Jewish Guild for the Blind, Make-A-Wish Foundation, A Community of Angels, The Boggy Creek Gang, The Hole-in-the-Wall Gang and many others. His works can be seen in art galleries, high profile serviced offices, museums and private collectors' galleries.

 

Pierre continues to spread his message of love and freedom. His enthusiasm for life combined with a sense of wonder, more than a pinch of whimsy, and his obvious appreciation of beauty and nature make his works a joy to see. He is currently 80 years old and lives in Florida.

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