Henri Matisse

Le Cow-Boy (The Cowboy)

Le Cow-Boy (The Cowboy) by Henri Matisse

Artwork Detail

Jazz is another major example of Matisse’s late obsession with “drawing with scissors”. The series was produced to illustrate the book of the same name, begun in 1943. As he worked through various ideas, Matisse pinned the shapes up on the wall of his studio, rearranging them until satisfied with the composition. He used a technique known as pochoir, in which thick ink was applied to paper through stencils cut in the shapes of his designs. Often described as one of the most beautiful artists’ books ever seen, Jazz builds 20 circus and theatre themes, with text, into a syncopated improvisation. The Auckland Art Gallery has 13 works on paper by Matisse.

Le Cow-Boy (The Cowboy)
Henri Matisse
Production date
1943 {conceived}
unfolded pochoir stencil print on Arches vélin paper
560 x 790 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Julian and Josie Robertson through the Auckland Art Gallery Foundation, 2023
Accession no
Other ID
X2009/12/12/14 Former Exhibition Number
Copying restrictions apply
International Art
Display status
Not on display

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