Journey Into Fauvism

Hello Everyone! Happy Summer! As we transition into the summer and classes come to a close, I and the other bloggers will now be writing about different art-related topics, be it something we’re interested in, an artist we love, or anything else! Today, I’d like to share with you some information about one of my favorite periods of art: Fauvism.

Fauvism began in France in the early 20th century as an extension of Post-Impressionism. These artists were eager to rebel against the expectations of Impressionism but did so in an even more extreme way than some of the other artists of the period.

The main objectives of Fauvism was to free the current use of color and explore free flowing, messy and colorful pieces. The artists creating Fauvism pieces wanted to use color in untraditional ways by using them to describe objects in ways they did not appear as in real life. For example, why paint a tree brown with green leaves when the trunk could be purple and the leaves orange, red, and blue?

Many other artists were horrified by this idea, but the criticism didn’t phase the Fauvist painters. They embraced the hate they received so much, that when a French art critic compared their pieces and use of color to “Les Fauves” (wild beasts), inferring that their art was primitive and wild, they adopted the term and the title of their art style!

These independent artists even set up their own art exhibitions that claimed to be much more open-minded and accessible than the older exhibitions. This allowed more artists to create freely and have a place to display their radical works.

Included below are some of my favorite examples of Fauvist art. Ever since I learned about Fauvism in my art history class this past semester, I’ve been in love with the art style. The bright usage of color and fantastical, the free appearance of so many of the pieces has inspired a lot of my own art and always has me excited to learn more about it.

Henri Matisse. Woman With a Hat, 1905.
Maurice de Vlaminck. La Machine Restaurant at Bougival, 1905.
Robert Delauney. L’homme a la Tulipe. 1906.
Andre Derain. The Turning Road, L’estaque, 1906.

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